Fourth wave sees more pregnant patients in Alberta ICUs, as 645 new COVID-19 cases were reported on Wednesday

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More pregnant women have been admitted to provincial ICUs during the fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic than in the previous three waves combined.


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That was one of the messages delivered by a panel of medical experts at a virtual town hall on Wednesday night, conducted to provide information on COVID-19 vaccines, fertility and maternal health.

More than 600 Albertans participated in the phone meeting with Alberta Chief Medical Officer Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Dr. Eliana Castillo, Associate Clinical Professor at the University of Calgary Cumming School of Medicine, and Dr. Verena Kuret, director of maternal-fetal medicine at the University of Calgary.

Hinshaw told participants that the city should answer any questions and provide current evidence on the safety of vaccines and pregnancy, any impact on fertility and adverse events of COVID-19 in pregnant women.


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During the fourth wave, 20 pregnant patients have been admitted to the ICU, Castillo said. Kuret said that the fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Delta variant have made things different for pregnant women.

In the previous three waves combined, only 16 pregnant women entered, Kuret said.

“It worries me because I have seen more patients in the ICU in each gestation, at the beginning, at the end of the pregnancy and in the middle, and these women are sick.”

Kuret also noted that for pregnant women admitted to the ICU, preterm delivery rates are “very high.”

“Usually we are seeing third trimester deliveries of women who have not been vaccinated, who have a severe infection and we are delivering them by emergency cesarean section prematurely in an attempt to help save their lives and, hopefully create some space for your lungs to expand and breathe. “


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When asked about COVID-19 vaccines and children, Hinshaw said Health Canada is reviewing an application from Pfizer for approval of vaccines in that age group.

“It is going through the same process that any childhood vaccine would have to go through, which is a rigorous process that not only analyzes that data and tests, but also involves inspection of the vaccine manufacturing site and ensures that nothing is licensed. for use in Canada, unless you have passed the highest bar is safety and efficacy. “

She also noted that when looking at all the different age categories of children, those under one year of age are at the highest risk for severe outcomes.

“The best way to protect them is to minimize their chances of being exposed and a really effective way to do this is the vaccine.”


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Doctors also noted that people who have been pregnant or breastfeeding during the COVID-19 pandemic are being recruited to participate in a vaccine study and can do so by visiting .

In Wednesday afternoon’s regular update, Alberta reported 645 new COVID-19 cases.

During the past 24 hours, 11,343 tests were completed, with a positivity rate of about 5.6 percent.

Across the province, there are 8,733 active cases of COVID-19, a decrease of 534 from Tuesday.

In the Edmonton area, which includes the City of Edmonton and surrounding municipalities, there are 2,025 active cases, a decrease of 141. The City of Edmonton currently has 1,215 active cases, a decrease of 53.

There are 810 Albertans hospitalized with the virus, a decrease of 26. Of those, 184 are in intensive care units, an increase of one.


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Ten more deaths brought the death toll in the province to 3,073.

As of Tuesday’s end, 86.8 percent of Albertans 12 and older who are eligible for COVID-19 have received at least one dose, while 79.4 percent are fully vaccinated.

Meanwhile, a new Angus Reid Institute study Examining provincial governments’ satisfaction with their health care management and the economy, it was found that 78 percent of Albertans believe the province is doing a poor job managing health care.

Twenty percent believe that the UCP government is doing a good job.

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