23 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba, including ones in school, personal care home

There are 23 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba on Wednesday, including 20 in Winnipeg, according to Dr. Brent Roussin, the province's chief public health officer.

20 of Wednesday's new cases are in Winnipeg, officials say; outbreak at John Pritchard School now at 7 cases

Manitoba Education Minister Kelvin Goertzen, left, and the province's Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin gave an impromptu press conference on Wednesday in light of the growing number of COVID-19 cases in Winnipeg schools. (David Lipnowski/The Canadian Press)

Twenty-three new COVID-19 cases were announced in Manitoba on Wednesday, including numerous cases at a Winnipeg school.

An estimated 250 students from John Pritchard School students were sent home for remote learning starting Wednesday after six new confirmed coronavirus cases were identified, bringing the school's tally to seven in total, Dr. Brent Roussin, the province's chief public health officer, said at an impromptu press conference with Education Minister Kelvin Goertzen. 

Meanwhile, a worker at Winnipeg's Parkview Place Long Term Care Home has tested positive for COVID-19 and the facility is now restricting visits as part of its outbreak protocols.

"All residents are monitored closely for symptoms twice daily and all staff are screened at the beginning and end of their shifts," said Dr. Rhonda Collins, the chief medical officer for Revera, which oversees Parkview Place.

Visits are being restricted to essential visitors only, she said.

It's the second time the care home in Winnipeg's Central Park area has had a case of COVID-19. A worker there first tested positive for the illness in early April.

It's one of six personal care homes in Winnipeg currently elevated to the critical or red level. On Tuesday, the province confirmed two other health care facilities — St. Amant and Actionmarguerite — had initiated outbreak protocols after workers tested positive for the virus.

There are now seven cases of COVID-19 connected to John Pritchard School, public health officials say. (Trevor Brine/CBC)

Twenty of Wednesday's new COVID-19 cases are in Winnipeg, two are in the Interlake-Eastern Health region and one is in the Northern Health region, Dr. Roussin reported. The cases in the Interlake-Eastern Health region are close contacts of a known case and preliminary investigations suggest the person in the North may be living in Winnipeg.

There are currently 283 active cases in Manitoba — 200 of which are in Winnipeg — and 1,190 individuals have recovered from COVID-19. The five-day COVID-19 test positivity rate is 1.5 per cent.

Winnipeg school outbreak prompts restrictions

To date, there have been six schools with COVID-19 exposures since students went back to class early last week. The first was reported just one day after schools reopened, when a potential exposure was announced at Churchill High School in Winnipeg.

John Pritchard School is the first to move to the restricted level — the orange level — on the province's pandemic response system due to the number cases and contacts involved.

Starting on Wednesday, students in grades 6, 7, 8, and those in a split grade 4/5, plus those who attend the Henderson Early Learning Centre — a before-and-after school program — were sent home for remote learning. Other grades and cohorts will continue to go to school for in-class learning.

"There's some students, there's some staff involved, but we don't want to specifically identify any of that," Roussin said.

All of the people who tested positive were asymptomatic while at the school, but developed symptoms and went for testing afterwards, he said.

WATCH | Full news conference on COVID-19 | Sept. 16, 2020:

The red illustrates the number of active cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba, while the green represents recovered cases. (Jacques Marcoux/CBC)

Possible Winnipeg exposures

Roussin also announced five possible COVID-19 exposures in Winnipeg on Sept. 5 and 6 at the following locations:

  • Tavern United at 1405 St. Matthew Ave., at 4:30 p.m. for about 45 minutes on Sept. 5.
  • U-Puttz, 423 McPhillips St., between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Sept. 5.
  • McPhillips Street Station, 484 McPhillips St., between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m.
  • Hampton Inn by Hilton Winnipeg, Airport/Polo Park, 730 Berry St., overnight on Sept. 5.
  • CF Polo Park, 1485 Portage Ave., from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m on Sept. 6
This chart shows the number of active cases broken down into provincial health regions. (Jacques Marcoux/CBC)

More from CBC Manitoba:

With files from Meaghan Ketcheson and Caitlyn Gowriluk


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