30 of 42 new Manitoba COVID-19 cases are in Winnipeg, as more possible exposures announced
Province says people were potentially exposed to the illness at several Winnipeg restaurants, bars last week
Winnipeg's growing active COVID-19 caseload jumped again on Wednesday, when 30 of Manitoba's 42 new cases of the illness were people who live in the capital city.
The update in a provincial news release came with a familiar plea to people living in or visiting Winnipeg: wash your hands, reduce the number of people you see from outside your household and stay home when sick.
There are now 418 active COVID-19 cases in Manitoba, with 335 of those — 80 per cent — in Winnipeg.
Wednesday's update also came with more warnings about public places in Winnipeg that have had possible COVID-19 exposures. Several more bars and restaurants and a college are now among the places where people may have been exposed to the illness.
The new exposures include Earls restaurant in St. Vital (on Sept. 15 from 5:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.), Leopold's Tavern in River Heights (on Sept. 15 from 9:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.) and a trivia night at Wee Johnny's Irish Pub in the Exchange District (on Sept. 15 from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.).
Possible exposures were also announced at Local Public Eatery downtown (on Sept. 15 and 16, though no times were provided) after exposures were previously announced at the restaurant on Sept. 11 and 12. More information about possible public exposures is posted on the Manitoba government's website.
Anyone who was at those places on the listed dates and times should watch for symptoms; if any develop, those people should immediately get tested for COVID-19 and self-isolate, the release says.
Late Wednesday, the Winnipeg School Division said a cohort of students at Grant Park High School was in self-isolation as someone at the school had tested positive.
Health officials told the school division that the person did not contract the virus in the school and risk to other students is considered low, division spokesperson Radean Carter said in an email.
One cohort at the school will begin self isolation while awaiting further instruction from public health, Carter said.
In a letter posted online, public health officials said the person was at the school on Sept. 15, 16 and 17 and that the affected class has been moved to remote learning.
A case of COVID-19 has also been linked to Red River College's Notre Dame Campus in Winnipeg, the college said in an email to students on Wednesday afternoon.
The school got word from public health officials about the positive test on Wednesday, the message from chief human resource officer Melanie Gudmundson said. The person did not have symptoms while on campus, and the risk of further spread at the school is considered low, the email said.
One classroom has been closed for deep cleaning and disinfection, and everyone who was in that space on the day the sick person was there has been sent home, the email said.
On top of the 30 cases in Winnipeg, an additional six of the new cases announced Wednesday are in the Southern Health region. A further three are in the Prairie Mountain Health region, two are in the Interlake-Eastern health region and the remaining one is in the Northern Health region, the news release says.
Manitoba's COVID-19 test positivity rate — a five-day rolling average of the number of tests that come back positive — jumped to 2.2 per cent from 1.8 per cent on Tuesday, the release says.
There are 11 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Manitoba, including five people in intensive care. That's up from eight people in hospital and two people in intensive care on Tuesday.
19th death confirmed Tuesday
A resident of Winnipeg's Parkview Place care home has died of COVID-19, the company that runs the home confirmed on Tuesday. The person's death, which was not included in the province's update, was Manitoba's 19th coronavirus-linked fatality.
A spokesperson for the province said public health doesn't announce or comment on COVID-19 deaths until investigations are complete.
As of Tuesday, seven residents and one staff member at the Winnipeg care home had tested positive for COVID-19.
Meanwhile, the outbreak at the Rideau Park Personal Care Home in Brandon, Man., is now over, the province's release on Wednesday says.
The site has been moved down from critical red to caution yellow in the province's colour-coded pandemic response system.
To date, 1,674 cases of the illness have been identified in the province and 1,238 people have recovered.
Two other deaths linked to COVID-19 were announced in Manitoba on Monday.
One was a woman linked to the outbreak at the Brandon Regional Health Centre's Assiniboine Centre, Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin said.
The other was a man connected to a communal living setting in the Southern Health region, Roussin said.
The number of confirmed cases of the illness linked to the outbreak at John Pritchard School in Winnipeg had reached 20 people, health officials said on Tuesday, nearly triple what it was a week earlier.
Winnipeg Mayor Brian Bowman urged the province to mandate face masks across the province on Tuesday, though he acknowledged the city could bring in the new rules in Winnipeg on its own.
Earlier this week, the province announced a partnership with Dynacare, a private testing lab, which is expected to more than double how many COVID-19 tests Manitoba can do.
On Tuesday, 1,703 more COVID-19 tests were done in Manitoba, bringing the total completed in the province to 170,045.