With COVID-19 cases climbing across the province, Premier Jason Kenney announced on Friday, September 3 the province will resume its mask mandate in all indoor public spaces and implemented new health restrictions.
The previous provincial mask mandate ended on July 1 and active case numbers declined from nearly 900 to just 560 province-wide by mid-July.
However, since then, those numbers have steadily increased and, as of Tuesday, August 31 there were over 12,000 active cases of COVID-19 across the province. This number continued to climb to 13,495 by Friday, September 3.
Along with the mandatory mask mandate, people are encouraged unvaccinated Albertans to limit indoor social gatherings and contacts to two cohort families or a maximum of 10 people.
Restaurants, pubs, bars, and other licensed facilities must end alcohol service by 10 p.m.
To encourage Albertans to book their COVID-19 vaccine appointment, the premier also announced a new incentive program for Albertans 18 and older.
Those who receive their first or second dose of the vaccine between September 3 and October 14 will be eligible to receive a one-time incentive of $100.
As of Friday, September 3 nearly 5.6 million doses of the vaccine have been administered with 78.3 per cent of Albertans having received at least one dose, and 70.2 per cent of the population 12 and older fully vaccinated.
Locally, in the Starland County-Drumheller region, 72.5 per cent of people 12 and older have received at least one dose and 63.8 per cent of the same population are fully vaccinated.
Along with the new incentive program, Albertans who are fully vaccinated are eligible to enter the Outdoor Adventure and Open for Summer lotteries to have the chance to win one of several outdoor adventure packages or $1 million-the final date for registration are September 9 and September 23, respectively.
A total of 1,401 new COVID-19 cases were identified across the province on Friday, September 3; 515 people are in hospital, with 118 in ICU.
An outbreak at the Drumheller Health Centre was previously declared on September 1 and as of Friday, September 3 a total of three individuals have tested positive for COVID-19 from this outbreak.
As of Friday, September 3 there are currently 14 active cases of COVID-19 in the Town of Drumheller.
In nearby Starland County there are 10 active cases, 29 in Kneehill County, and 30 in Wheatland County.