Manitoba

Expect Manitoba's vaccine mandates to remain in place until spring

Exclusive access to many businesses and services in Manitoba, granted only to those with vaccination cards or QR codes, should be expected to last until spring, says the province's top doctor.

'We have to expect that this would carry us through the typical respiratory virus season,' Dr. Roussin says

Manitobans can apply for the immunization card two weeks after their last dose of the vaccine. (Rachel Bergen/CBC)

Exclusive access to many businesses and services in Manitoba, granted only to those with vaccination cards or QR codes, should be expected to last until spring, says the province's top doctor.

"We have to expect that this would carry us through the typical respiratory virus season. So, through winter into spring," Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin said on Monday.

"Obviously, we review all these things all the time but I think the given the state of our health-care system and the demands that the respiratory virus season will be likely to put on it, it's very likely [it will] have to take us through this winter."

The vaccination requirements came into effect Sept. 3 for a wide variety of businesses and services deemed non-essential, such as restaurants, gyms, movie theatres, casinos and nightclubs, as well as indoor and outdoor ticketed sporting events and concerts.

A few days later the mandate was expanded to include additional public spaces, such as museums and galleries, while dine-in patrons at food courts were also added to the list.

There are no restrictions on indoor and outdoor gatherings at private residences — unless someone is present who has chosen not to get vaccinated but is eligible to do so.

In that case, private indoor gatherings are restricted to two households, and only 10 people, not including members of the hosting household, will be allowed to gather outdoors on private property.

The rules appear to be working, Roussin noted.

The occupants of the private residence where a gathering is held are responsible for determining the vaccination status of all persons attending the gathering, the public health order says.

In the past three weeks there have been tens of thousands of people gathered for a Winnipeg Blue Bombers CFL game, three Winnipeg Jets NHL games, a concert at Canada Life Centre and Thanksgiving dinners around the province.

"We have not been able to tie any transmission to those events," Roussin said.

"There's some complexity with linking up cases when you have that many people at an event but we certainly haven't seen any significant transmission there."

Manitoba health officials give COVID-19 update on 3rd-dose eligibility

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Darren Bernhardt

Reporter/Editor

Darren Bernhardt spent the first dozen years of his journalism career in newspapers, first at the Regina Leader-Post then the Saskatoon StarPhoenix. He has been with CBC Manitoba since 2009 and specializes in offbeat and local history stories. He is the author of award-nominated and bestselling The Lesser Known: A History of Oddities from the Heart of the Continent.

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