WINNIPEG -- Manitoba is reporting its second-highest spike in daily COVID-19 cases on Friday, along with three new deaths from COVID-19, including two linked to variants of concern.

The deaths include a woman in her 50s from the Interlake-Eastern Health Region and a woman in her 90s from the Prairie Mountain Health region. Both deaths have been linked to the B.1.1.7 variant.

The third death, a woman in her 80s from the Prairie Mountain Health Region, is linked to an outbreak at the Russell Health Centre.

Manitoba has reported 1,022 COVID-19 deaths during the pandemic.

Manitoba also announced 594 new COVID-19 cases, the second-highest single-day total since the pandemic started, though six previous cases were removed due to a data correction.

The total comes one day after the province recorded a record 603 new cases.

“We are at a critical time right now,” said Dr. Jazz Atwal, deputy chief provincial public health officer, during the daily update.

Winnipeg reported the most cases Friday, with 420 new cases announced. The city’s test positivity rate is 16.1 per cent.

Manitoba’s five-day test positivity rate is 14.1 per cent. On Friday, 55 new COVID-19 cases were reported in the Southern Health Region, 54 cases were reported in the Prairie Mountain Health Region, 39 cases were in the Interlake-Eastern Health Region, and 26 cases were in the Northern Health Region.

Since March 2020, 47,504 COVID-19 cases have been reported in Manitoba. There are 4,855 active cases and 41,627 recoveries.

On Thursday, Manitoba implemented new public health orders, which take effect Saturday. Under the new orders, outdoor gatherings with people from different households are not allowed, and only one person per household is allowed to go into a business.

Atwal encouraged Manitobans to stay home, follow the public health orders, and get vaccinated.

“We must bring our case numbers down and reduce the growing stress on our health-care system,” he said. “We need to do the hard work now in order to position ourselves to be in a good position later.”


The total number of variants of concern continues to rise in Manitoba.

On Friday, 434 new cases were identified, bringing Manitoba’s total to 8,070. Of those cases, 2,638 cases are active.

There were 169 new B.1.1.7 variant cases, bringing the total to 3,800 in the province. Manitoba also reported seven new P1 variant cases, bringing the total to 72. No new cases were reported for the B.1351 variant or the B.1.617 variant, with their numbers staying at 29 and 18, respectively.

There are 4,151 unspecified variant cases in Manitoba.

- With files from CTV’s Danton Unger and Devon McKendrick.