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Manitoba reports 158 new coronavirus cases, 5 additional deaths

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Dr. Jazz Atwal, Manitoba’s acting deputy chief provincial public health officer, announced on Wednesday five new deaths related to COVID-19 and 158 new cases, a number that is slowly dropping since tight restrictions on public gatherings and store openings were put in place in November.

Another five Manitobans with COVID-19 have died and health officials say 158 new infections have been identified across the province.

The latest numbers come a day after Manitoba reported its lowest daily caseload since mid-October — 92 cases — and follows a trend that has seen the province’s daily list of infections slowly dropping since tight restrictions on public gatherings and store openings were put in place in November.

Read more: Manitoba’s COVID-19 case count drops below 100, 8 more deaths reported

Dr. Jazz Atwal, Manitoba’s acting deputy chief provincial public health officer, said it’s crucial Manitobans continue to follow the public health orders.

“We are headed in a good direction … the actions taken by Manitobans is making a difference,” he said at a Wednesday press conference. “However it is too early to start a victory lap.

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Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Manitoba provides update on vaccine rollout' Coronavirus: Manitoba provides update on vaccine rollout
Coronavirus: Manitoba provides update on vaccine rollout

“If we let up now, all the hard work for the past several weeks could be for nothing — we could be back to where we started in in November.”

The latest victims announced Wednesday bring the province’s total number of deaths since March to 753 and include:

  • a man in his 50s from the Northern health region;
  • a man in his 80s from Prairie Mountain Health region and linked to the outbreak at the McCreary/Alonsa Health Centre;
  • a man in his 70s from the Winnipeg health region and linked to the outbreak at the Southeast Personal Care Home;
  • a man in his 80s from the Winnipeg health region; and
  • a woman in her 80s from the Winnipeg health region and linked to the outbreak at the Charleswood Care Centre.

The new cases bring the province’s total caseload to 26,695 after health officials removed three previously announced cases due to a data correction.

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Wednesday’s list of new infections come from across the province and include 61 cases in the Winnipeg Health region, eight cases in the Southern Health region, 12 cases in the Prairie Mountain Health region, 70 cases in the Northern Health region, and seven cases in the Interlake-Eastern Health region.

Read more: Manitobans part of study looking at how many Canadians have had COVID-19 and didn’t know

According to provincial data 2,928 of Manitoba’s cases remain active.

Atwal said there are currently 119 people in hospital with COVID-19 as well as 170 who remain in care but are no longer considered active cases, for a total of 289 hospitalizations as of Wednesday morning.

He said there are 19 COVID-19 patients in ICU, with another 17 who are no longer infectious but continue to need critical care, for a total of 36 patients in ICU.

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Provincial data shows 1,778 COVID-19 tests were completed Tuesday bringing the total number of lab tests completed since early February 2020 to 443,683.

The five-day test positivity rate is is 9.6 per cent provincially and 7.4 per cent in Winnipeg, Atwal said.

Read more: Manitoba students going back to school Monday, says province

Health officials said a new outbreak has been declared at Extendicare Tuxedo Villa Personal Care Home in Winnipeg ,while a previously declared outbreak at Saul and Claribel Simkin Centre Personal Care Home in Winnipeg, has ended.

Earlier in the day Wednesday the province said 12,409 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Manitoba as of Tuesday, including 10,749 first doses and 1,660 second doses.

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Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.