One new COVID-19 variant case identified in Manitoba; 104 new cases announced Friday
Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba chief public health officer, speaks during the province's COVID-19 update at the Manitoba legislature in Winnipeg Wednesday, March 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods
WINNIPEG -- Health officials in Manitoba have announced a new case of a COVID-19 variant.
One case of the B.1.1.7 variant was identified in the Winnipeg area on Friday and was related to travel.
There have been 12 cases of the variant first found in the United Kingdom and 11 cases of the B.126.96.36.199 variant.
One new death was announced, bringing the total to 912. The death was a woman in her 80s from the Winnipeg area linked to the outbreak at the Convalescent Home of Winnipeg.
Officials also announced 104 new COVID-19 cases; however, six previously announced cases were removed due to a data correction.
There have been 32,607 cases of COVID-19 since March 12, 2020.
The five-day test positivity rate is 4.1 per cent in Manitoba and three per cent in Winnipeg.
Of the new cases, 51 are from the Northern Health Region, 37 are from Winnipeg, six in the Interlake-Eastern Health Region and five cases were identified in both the Prairie Mountain Health Region and the Southern Health Region.
Officials added reviews have been done on active cases and they were able to move 392 active cases to recovered. This means there are 872 active cases in Manitoba and 30,823 have recovered.
Manitoba currently has 54 people in hospital that have COVID-19, including 10 people in intensive care. There are another 100 people in hospital who are no longer infectious but still require care, including 12 in ICU.
On Thursday, 2,195 tests were completed, bringing the total to 546,239 since February 2020.
Dr. Brent Roussin, the chief provincial public health officer, said Manitobans need to keep focusing on the fundamentals as there has been a slight increase in cases over the last week.
"We're a year into this, so this shouldn’t come as a surprise. As we loosen restrictions, we have more interactions and thus an increase in case numbers. At the same time we are rolling out the vaccine, we're protecting more and more of the most vulnerable of Manitoba," said Roussin.
He said with more cases they want to see a lower number of severe outcomes so that there isn't a strain on the health-care system.
If that can't be done, he said, restrictions could be tightened again.
"We need to stay on guard, although this continues to be a time of optimism as we roll out more and more of that vaccine."