COVID-19 screening capacity expected to increase in Manitoba this week
A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. With students and teachers preparing to return to classrooms across the country this month, experts say ramping up testing protocols is one way to help provide a safe transition back to school. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
WINNIPEG -- The province announced on Monday that Manitobans should expect to see additional screening sites this week.
Cameron Friesen, the province's minister for Health, Seniors and Active Living, made the announcement at a news conference on Monday.
"We've engaged with Dynacare to supply additional screening site capacity," said Friesen.
He added there are a broad number of locations where new sites will be set up and mobile sites are also in the works.
This comes as the province continues to see an increase in COVID-19 cases. There are now 618 active cases throughout Manitoba, and with that, more people are getting tested.
On Friday, 2,647 people were tested, while on Saturday there were 2,196 tests performed, and on Sunday, another 1,596 tests were done, bringing the total to 180,750 since early February.
Friesen expects the first new site to be operational on Wednesday and also noted the government is reviewing the testing system capacity.
"We are undertaking a very significant review. A kind of top to bottom review on our capacity at this point and time," he said. "It will be expedited. It is designed to see when it comes to screening, when it comes to lab testing, when it comes to contract tracing, and then the public report back of those results, where we are doing well, where we can do better and what we can add."
He said part of the early analysis was more sites were needed and he is happy to see Dynacare stepping up to help.
In an email to CTV News, a spokesperson for Dynacare confirmed the site will be launching on Wednesday in Winnipeg and it will be a mobile unit.
"I can share that the mobile collection unit will be able to serve 80 patients per day," the spokesperson said.
CTV News will provide more details about the site when they become available.