WINNIPEG -- Manitoba’s top doctor once again reminded residents to celebrate holidays only with members of your household, as Hanukkah gets underway and Christmas is only 15 days away.

Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s chief provincial public health officer, made the comments during his daily COVID-19 update on Thursday.

“Many are thinking of their holiday plans,” he said. “We want to, again, be clear with our messaging that everyone should celebrate with members of their household only. There are a few exceptions to this, but for the most part, plan to celebrate with people outside of your household virtually this year.

“Our recommendations again for family outside the province, or even outside the household within the province is to not gather, not have people over at your house, not to plan to travel or have people travel here to attend holiday gatherings.”

Roussin said the high test positivity rate should discourage people from travelling. On Thursday, Manitoba’s five-day test positivity rate was 13.3 per cent, and sits at 13.9 per cent in Winnipeg.

Under the current public health orders, gatherings with people outside of your immediate household are prohibited. Those who live alone are allowed to have one person designated as a visitor come over. There are also exceptions for health-care and childcare purposes for people to visit them home.

The current orders expire Jan. 8, 2021.

Roussin was also asked about situations where family members were self-isolating in the weeks leading up to visiting for Christmas.

While he acknowledges the challenge of the timing, coming right at the holidays, he said the public health orders are clear in saying that people can’t gather with others outside of their household.

“The overall advice is to follow public health orders, don’t gather outside of your household, and the best way to protect yourself and the people around you is to self-isolate, and stay home as much as possible,” he said.