WINNIPEG -- Manitoba has added more intensive care beds, as the surge of COVID-19 cases continues to push hospitals across the province towards capacity.

On Tuesday, Shared Health’s Chief Nursing Officer Lanette Siragusa said the health system is under strain due to wide-spread community transmission of COVID-19. She said this is all happening while many staff are at home in self-isolation, further straining the system.

“Without the immediate reversal of our current trend of community spread, our health system will continue to be strained – please do your part while we do ours,” Siragusa said.

“We are the back-up plan for the public health measures. Our hospitals and our providers are the safety net and we must protect their ability to care for the Manitobans who need our help, whether it is related to COVID or any other illness.”

As of Tuesday, the province has 207 people in hospital due to COVID-19, with 30 of them in intensive care.

The surge prompted the province to add four more ICU beds to the Grace Hospital on Monday, bringing Manitoba’s total number of intensive care beds to 89. Siragusa said currently 81 of those beds were being used which included the 30 COVID-19 patients.

She said since the end of October, the province has added 12 ICU beds to the system and are planning to add more.

She said the province is also expanding medical meds throughout the province, but this is being done by converting surgical beds for medical patients.

“With those measures in place, we still have capacity for medicine but it is an ongoing effort to keep adding so we can manage the influx,” she said.

Since Oct. 26, the province has postponed 449 non-urgent and elective surgeries.