COVID-19 online dashboard will no longer be updated, reports will be released weekly instead: province
Friday will be last daily numbers update
Manitobans will no longer have access to daily, weekday COVID-19 numbers, the province announced Thursday.
After Friday, the online data dashboard, which CBC has relied on to report daily case counts, hospitalizations and deaths, will no longer be updated.
The dashboard has previously been updated every weekday at 12:30 p.m., with Monday's reports including data from over the weekend.
Instead of the dashboard, the government will share COVID-19 data via their weekly online epidemiology reports.
The reports do not provide a daily breakdown of cases or hospitalizations; the data is measured on a weekly basis.
The province releases the reports with a one-week delay, with the next one scheduled to be released on March 31.
The end of the dashboard updates effectively ends real-time daily COVID-19 data.
"We're extremely concerned that the government is no longer going to be doing regular updates to its COVID dashboard, especially on a day when hospitalizations and ICU cases are both going up," Manitoba Liberal Leader Dougald Lamont said during a media scrum after Thursday's question period.
"This government is basically going to stick its head in the sand and stop measuring," Lamont said.
The vaccine dashboard will continue to be updated until March 31. After that, vaccine numbers will be included in the weekly reports.
There are five more COVID-19 deaths and 18 fewer patients in hospital Thursday, the province says.
There are 369 patients in the hospital with COVID-19, including 18 people in the intensive care unit, a decrease of four since Wednesday.
There were 209 new lab-confirmed cases reported Thursday, which is an undercount due to limited testing availability and no tracking of rapid test results. The 3,689 active cases are also an undercount.
Manitoba's five-day test positivity rate has stayed at 13.1 per cent, the same as Wednesday.
The weekly bulletin says from March 16 to 23, there were 128 new hospitalizations — a 4.9 per cent increase from the previous week.
During that week, there were 11 new ICU cases, a 57.1 per cent increase from the previous week.
The more contagious BA.2 subvariant of Omicron has arrived in Manitoba and makes up about 12 per cent of cases.
As of Monday, 43 cases of the subvariant were confirmed, although this is likely an undercount.
To date, 1,739 people have died in Manitoba due to the coronavirus.