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AHS Notice: Social gatherings involving students

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On Tuesday, November 3, The Medicine Hat Catholic Board of Education received a letter from Alberta Health Services directed to parents and caregivers regarding social gatherings involving students. View the letter below or click here to download the official letter pdf

_______________________________________

November 3, 2020

RE: Social gatherings involving students

We seek your assistance in distributing this important information to guardians, parents
and students within your school divisions.

Alberta Health Services (AHS) has been advised of a number of upcoming social gatherings
that may involve many students. This, in addition to the recent parties that have taken place,
can and has led to the spread of COVID-19. One ill person who attends such events can cause
many others to become exposed and infected. We are seeing this, not only across the province,
but within our region as well.

A significant number of outbreak-linked cases in Alberta are from social gatherings. In fact, 15
percent of outbreaks are from such events and 1/3 of people infected in outbreaks contracted
the virus while socializing or celebrating.

Currently, Public Health requirements will allow social gatherings, with restrictions of all indoor
social events to no more than 50 persons and outdoor events with no seating to 100 persons.
This is identified in Chief Medical Officer of Health Orders.

During such gatherings, it is critical all participants adhere to hand hygiene, illness screening
and physical distancing requirements, regardless of the size or location of the event. Where
physical distancing cannot be maintained, masking must instead be required of all participants.

We are asking for your support in implementing these measures. These measures have been
shown to successfully reduce the spread of COVID-19 and we can all do our part in making
social gatherings safer.

In general, social gatherings pose a significant risk of COVID-19 transmission and this may put
yourself, your child(ren), the teachers and the entire student body at risk.

Please, help us protect you, your family and our communities by considering limiting attendance
at these social gatherings.

For more support and guidance, please see: https://www.alberta.ca/restrictions-on-
gatherings.aspx.

Sincerely,

Vivien Suttorp, MD, MPH, CCFP, FCFP, CCPE
Lead Medical Officer of Health
Alberta Health Services – South Zone

Shobhit Maruti, MD, MPH, FRCPC, DABPM
Medical Officer of Health
Alberta Health Services – South Zone