EDMONTON, AB – The province confirming two variant cases of COVID-19 where in-school transmission is the likely source.

They are the first reported cases involving transmission of the variant in a school setting though to date there have been seven classes in six schools overall that have had a variant case attend while infectious.

As for new cases, another 339 people tested positive for the virus over the past day out of about 10,800 tests for a provincial positivity rate of 3.2 percent.

A total of 421 people are in hospital with the virus – 77 of them in the ICU.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw says hospitalizations continue to decline but the current level is still about seven times higher than it was in the spring and summer.

There were 27 new cases reported in the South Zone – 15 of them in Lethbridge – though with recoveries factored in, the number of active cases remained steady at 189 day-over-day.

More than 129,400 vaccine doses have been administered to date and 37,000 Albertans are now fully immunized with two doses.