WINNIPEG -- The province has reported two more people have died due to COVID-19 on Sunday, bringing the total number of COVID-19 deaths in the province to 978.

The deaths include a woman in her thirties from the Northern Health region and a man in his eighties from the Southern Health region, which is linked to an outbreak at the Emerson Health Centre.

The province is also reporting 281 new cases of the virus have been identified. Two cases were removed due to a data correction, bringing the provincial total of lab-confirmed cases to 39,274.

Of the newly announced cases, the majority are in the Winnipeg health region with 178. The Prairie Mountain health region had 46 cases, 22 were in the Interlake-Eastern health region, nine in the Northern health region and 26 cases were reported in Southern Health–Santé Sudhealth region.

The current five-day COVID-19 test positivity rate now sits at 7.7 per cent provincially and 8.4 per cent in Winnipeg.

The province now has 2,540 people with active cases of the virus with 35,756 recoveries.

There are currently 167 people in hospital because of COVID-19, with 40 of those patients in the ICU.

Breaking down those hospitalizations, 105 people have active cases of the virus, with 27 of those case in the ICU.

The remaining 62 patients in hospital are no longer infectious but still require care, with 13 in the ICU.

The number of variants of concern cases isn’t updated on Sundaybut numbers updated on from Saturday show 978 active cases with the total number of cases at 2,344.

The total number of laboratory tests completed since early February in the province now sits at 667,827, after 3,188 tests were done on Saturday.