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Alberta child care facilities facing COVID-19 outbreak spike. Here’s why

Alberta child-care facilities are experiencing a massive spike in COVID-19 outbreaks. As Jackie Wilson reports, over half are in Calgary.

Child care facilities across Alberta are experiencing a spike in COVID-19 outbreaks.

According to Alberta Health, 87 currently have an outbreak. Of those, more than half are in Calgary.

An outbreak is declared when five or more cases are linked to transmission within a business.

  • North Zone: 9
  • Edmonton Zone: 22
  • Central Zone: 6
  • Calgary Zone: 47
  • South Zone: 3

In terms of the Calgary outbreaks, here’s a breakdown of the data from Alberta Health.

Location Total Active Recovered
1st Class Child Care, Calgary 7 2 5
A2Z Kidz Ed., Calgary 7 6 1
Active Start Childcare Country Hills Centre, Calgary 16 4 12
Active Start Childcare Sage Hill Centre, Calgary 26 21 5
Alpine Montessori Children’s Centre, Calgary 12 0 12
Bonavista Montessori Children’s Academy, Calgary 12 12 0
BrightPath Airdrie South 12 0 12
BrightPath Richmond, Calgary 8 4 4
BrightPath Sage Hill, Calgary 8 7 1
Brightpath Whitehorn, Calgary 8 7 1
Cancare Children’s Centre Arbour Lake, Calgary 33 32 1
Child Enrichment Centre, Calgary 23 0 23
Creative Learning Centre Daycare and Preschool (Canyon Meadows Dr.), Calgary 6 0 6
Crossfield Montessori Childcare, Crossfield 15 1 14
Discovery Childcare, Calgary 10 0 10
Early Discoveries Nursery School, Calgary 19 0 19
Early Explorers Learning Centre, Calgary 12 10 2
Evansfun Dayhome, Calgary 5 0 5
Inner Garden Dayhome, Calgary 7 7 0
Just for You Daycare Killarney, Calgary 8 8 0
Kids & Company (Britannia), Calgary 28 1 27
Kids & Company (Evanston), Calgary 11 1 10
Kids Connection Daycare, High River 8 6 2
Kids First Creative Childcare, Calgary 23 18 5
Kidsland Daycare (McKenzie), Calgary 5 5 0
Kids U – McKnight, Calgary 19 10 9
Kidz Home, Calgary 5 5 0
La Societe Pommes de Reinette Daycare NE, Calgary 10 2 8
Leap n Learn, Okotoks 18 18 0
Little Roots Learning Centre, Calgary 7 1 6
Little Steps Preschool, Airdrie 7 1 6
Little Treasures Inglewood, Calgary 5 0 5
Mahogany Learning Centre, Calgary 6 0 6
Magic Mountain Daycare (Crossings), Airdrie 70 12 58
Magic Mountain Daycare (Kings Heights), Airdrie 5 0 5
Mahogany Scholars Preschool, Calgary 9 0 9
Mount Royal University Child Care Centre (2227 58 Ave.), Calgary 8 3 5
My Kinderhouse Preschool Country Hills, Calgary 8 7 1
Pacekids Program, Calgary 7 4 3
Private day home, Calgary 13 0 13
Private day home, Calgary 7 6 1
Ranchland Montessori Children’s Centre, Calgary 5 3 2
Thornhill Child Care Centre (Bowness Montgomery), Calgary 39 9 30
Thornhill Child Care Centre (Centre St.), Calgary 17 5 12
Wee Wild Ones, Calgary 56 22 34
Willowbrae Childcare Academy, Calgary 10 0 10
Wonder World Dayhome, Calgary 8 8 0

Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Monday the spike in child care facility outbreaks can be linked to a number of factors, but the biggest contributor is COVID-19 variants.

“We have seen that variant cases, when introduced into child care facilities — particularly the P1 variant cases — when those are introduced, they can spread more easily than we have seen, even with the B.1.1.7 or other variant cases.”

Read more:
3rd COVID-19 wave bringing ‘the most ICU patients that we’ve ever seen in our health-care system:’ Alberta Health Services

The P1 variant was first identified in Brazil.

Hinshaw adds the increase could also be, in part, due to a lower threshold for reporting outbreaks and the close monitoring of these types of businesses.

One Calgary child-care director attributes the outbreak at her facility to asymptomatic infections.

“They’re coming in and they don’t have any symptoms, so it’s really hard for us to know where the COVID-19 is coming from,” said Jenni Van Iderstine, director of Early Discoveries.

Given the surge in cases, the province is investigating if any additional measures need to be taken to improve child care facility safety.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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