As COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to decline and pressure on the healthcare system decreases, step two of the province’s path back to normal will begin on March 1.
Since step one began on February 8, COVID-19 positivity rates in the province have continued to decline. Hospitalizations in intensive and non-intensive care have also steadily declined and are at the lowest levels since January 22.
Effective March 1, Alberta will begin step two, which will include the end of limits on social gatherings, capacity limits for large venues, remaining school requirements, screening of youth for activities, the mandatory work-from-home order and public masking requirements except in high-risk settings.
“Over the last three weeks, cases and hospitalizations have continued to drop as we have started lifting restrictions. This promising trend puts Alberta in a position to safely remove the majority of remaining public health measures. This is a good day for Albertans as we get another step closer to getting back to normal.”
— Jason Kenney, Premier
“I am pleased to see that the stress on our healthcare system continues to lessen. Not only does this allow us to ease more public health measures, it also reduces the pressure and strain on our dedicated healthcare workers who have worked tirelessly through the pandemic to provide expert care to Albertans.”
— Jason Copping, Minister of Health
Under step two, masking requirements in high-risk settings will continue, including at AHS facilities, continuing care centres and on public transit. Isolation remains mandatory for anyone with COVID-19 symptoms or a positive test result. These public health protections will remain in place until step three, which will occur at a later date, provided hospitalizations continue to decline.
Step two: Effective March 1
- Remaining provincial school requirements (including cohorting) will be removed
- Screening prior to youth activities will no longer be required
- Capacity limits will be lifted for all venues
- Limits on social gatherings will be removed
- The provincial mask mandate will be lifted in most settings. However, masking will still be required in high-risk settings, including on public transit, at Alberta Health Services-operated and contracted facilities and all continuing care settings.
- Restrictions on interactive activities, liquor service and operating hours will be lifted
- Mandatory work-from-home requirements will be removed
Step three: To be determined based on hospitalization rates continuing to trend downwards
- COVID-19-specific measures in continuing care and acute care settings and on public transit will be removed
- Mandatory isolation becomes a recommendation only
Additional details on all restrictions and measures in place are available at alberta.ca/CovidMeasures.