Alberta acted like the pandemic was over. Now it’s a cautionary tale for Canada – CBC

Saskatchewan faces similar surge in hospitals, while Manitoba is at risk from low vaccination rates

Oct 02, 2021

The COVID-19 situation in Alberta has gone from bad to worse — providing a cautionary tale for the rest of Canada on how a string of bad policy decisions, low vaccination rates and a failure to act quickly are a recipe for disaster.

Unlike Ontario, which has triple the population but is faring much better in the fourth wave after keeping many public health restrictions in place, Alberta resisted vaccine passports, lifted mask mandates and even planned to abandon test, trace and isolate protocols before backtracking as cases rose.

To put it bluntly, Premier Jason Kenney’s “best summer ever” was a failure.

“The end of this terrible time is just two weeks away,” Kenney infamously said on June 18. “We finally have the upper hand on this virus and can safely open up our province.”

Fast forward to today and Alberta has the highest rate of infections in the country, at close to four times the national average, and Albertans are dying of COVID-19 at close to three times the rate of anywhere else in Canada — rivalled only by Saskatchewan.

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