WINNIPEG -- Manitoba health officials have announced two more deaths related to COVID-19.

The deaths were announced in a news bulletin Tuesday afternoon, bringing the total number of deaths since the pandemic started to 11. Tuesday also marked the first time more than one death from COVID-19 was reported in Manitoba.

Both deaths were in the Southern Health Region. One death was a man in his 80s from the Hanover health district, and the second death was a man in his 90s from the Niverville/Ritchot health district.

Both men were hospitalized, the province said, and were previously announced cases connected to known clusters.

Health officials announced 17 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the total number of cases in Manitoba to 748 since March 12. The province said one case was removed from the list on Tuesday,

Of the new cases, 11 cases were in the Winnipeg health region, two are in the Interlake-Eastern Health Region, two are in Southern Health and two are in Prairie Mountain Health.

“Preliminary investigations indicate the Winnipeg cases are mostly related to contacts that turned into cases,” the news bulletin states. “There are cases with unknown acquisition in the region. Case investigations are ongoing and when they are completed, additional information will be provided as needed to inform of any public health risks.”

There are currently eight people hospitalized, with two people in intensive care. The province said 235 COVID-19 cases are active, and 502 people are listed as recovered.

A total of 1,028 laboratory tests were completed on Monday. Since early February, 116,990 tests for COVID-19 have been completed in Manitoba.

The five-day test positivity rate in Manitoba is now 1.8 per cent.