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COVID-19: Manitoba adjusts update schedule, information no longer released on weekends

SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which cause COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab. Viruses are constantly mutating, with coronavirus variants circulating around the globe. The Associated Press

For at least the month of August, health officials in Manitoba will no longer be providing COVID-19 information on weekends, and are reducing the frequency of updates on weekdays.

That said, the government’s news release leaves room for that to change “as real-time information about cases and vaccination rates emerges,” or should a fourth wave of the virus develop later in the fall.

Effective Saturday, July 31, media bulletins will now be released on Mondays and Thursdays, and the weekly update on health order enforcement will be included on Thursdays.

Vaccine media bulletins will be released on Mondays and Wednesdays.

The province’s online COVID-19 dashboard will be updated on weekdays only.

Read more: Manitoba reports 46 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death

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A media briefing with both the chief provincial public health officer and medical lead for the Vaccine Implementation Task Force will take place virtually on Mondays for members of the press, and will no longer be streamed live.

However, due to the long weekend, the next media availability will happen on Tuesday, Aug. 3.

The province says the changes reflect an improving COVID-19 situation in Manitoba and increasing levels of vaccination.

It says plans are in the works to have media return to the press gallery at the Legislative Building, pending any potential changes to the public health orders.

As of Friday, there were 542 active cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba, including 93 individuals in hospital, with 25 said to be receiving intensive care.

The test-positivity rate stood at 2.3 per cent. To date, 1,178 people in the province with COVID-19 have died.

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