18 new cases of COVID-19 announced in Manitoba on Saturday
13 of the new cases are in Winnipeg health region, says province
There are 18 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba on Saturday, the province says in a news release, 13 of which are in the Winnipeg health region.
Another three of the new cases are in the Prairie Mountain Health region, while two are in the Southern Health region, the release says.
A possible exposure to the novel coronavirus was announced at another Winnipeg school on Saturday. A person with COVID-19 was at Gordon Bell High School at 3 Borrowman Pl. on Thursday morning and afternoon, the release says.
No close contacts have been identified at the school, and the person got the illness outside of school. The exposure risk is assessed to be low, the province's release says.
The school has closed off areas used by the person in question and won't use them again until after they've been cleaned, the release says.
A letter about the exposure has been sent to parents, the province says. Aside from the person with COVID-19, no one at the school needs to self-isolate.
Saturday's news release again highlighted the "concerning" increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in Winnipeg, with officials urging people in the city to stick to the fundamentals, including washing hands and staying home when sick.
Winnipeg's active caseload again reached a new height on Saturday, according to provincial data, with a total of 252 cases — making up more than three-quarters of the province's 331.
Meanwhile, a downtown Winnipeg restaurant is temporarily closed as public health officials investigate possible COVID-19 exposures there.
Local Public Eatery at 274 Garry St. will be closed for at least 24 hours, pending the results of those investigations, a spokesperson for the province said in an email on Saturday.
Public health officials will share more information as it is confirmed, the spokesperson said.
A sign on the business's door on Saturday said the building was shut down after a possible exposure last weekend.
"Unfortunately, we had a group in our building that had COVID-19 last weekend," the sign said. "We will reopen as soon as it is safe to serve you again."
New cases at Fisher River
Three new cases of COVID-19 have been identified on the Fisher River Cree Nation, according to statements signed by Chief David Crate and leadership on the community's website on Friday.
The update brings the number of cases identified on the First Nation to four, the latest statement from the First Nation said.
Those numbers have prompted Charles Cochrane, the executive director of the Manitoba First Nations Education Resource Centre, to have more discussions with First Nations leaders and public health officials about keeping students safe in the communities.
"The numbers have been low in First Nations basically up until now and are relatively still low, and we want to keep it that way. So obviously we discussed together those ways of making sure that our schools are safe," he said.
"The leadership there [at Fisher River] ... are very proactive in making sure that the numbers don't increase. Hopefully that continues."
Manitoba's five-day test positivity rate, a rolling average of the number of COVID-19 tests that come back positive, is down slightly to 1.6 per cent, the provincial government's news release says.
There are now 10 people in hospital with COVID-19 in Manitoba, including three in intensive care.
To date, a total of 1,558 cases of the illness have been detected in the province; 1,211 of those people have recovered and 16 have died, the release says.
On Friday, 1,488 more COVID-19 tests were done in Manitoba, bringing the total done in the province to 162,961.