In a news conference last week, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, explained the province’s public health system needs to respond to a variety of diseases besides COVID-19, especially as fall approaches.
“What we know from looking around the world is that COVID-19 will not be eliminated,” Hinshaw told reporters. “We will be needing to live with this virus for years to come.”
According to the Alberta government website, the province will begin “bringing the health response in line with influenza and other respiratory viruses.”
This includes shutting down all COVID testing centers by the end of August, lifting the mask mandate for public transport as of August 16, and lifting all requirements to quarantine after exposure to the virus, or even after experiencing COVID symptoms. The provincial government of Alberta is thus putting the response to virus squarely back in the hands of the people, which is where it ought to have been all along.