No new COVID-19 cases, 1 false positive on Easter Sunday

The update brings Manitoba’s total number of cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus to 242 — 142 of which are considered active.

Manitoba health officials took a day off from their daily briefing on COVID-19

Winnipeg's COVID-19 test sites, which the exception of the Mount Carmel Clinic, are open with regular hours throughout the long weekend. (Gary Solilak/CBC)

Manitoba's COVID-19 count dropped by one on Sunday, when the province announced no new cases and deemed a probable case a false positive.

That brings Manitoba's total number of cases of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus to 242 — 142 of which are considered active.

The case ruled out wasn't the first false positive in the province. On March 23, a probable positive case of COVID-19 was ruled out by health officials as a false positive test result. On April 5, Roussin announced the test that said a worker at a Gimli nursing home had COVID-19 was also a false positive

Eight people in the province are hospitalized with COVID-19, four of whom are in intensive care units. Four people in Manitoba have died from the illness and 96 have recovered.

On Saturday, the province's Cadham lab did 850 tests for COVID-19, bringing Manitoba's total number of tests done to 17,221.

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Chief provincial public health officer Dr. Brent Roussin and Manitoba Shared Health chief nursing officer Lanette Siragusa have been giving daily updates on the virus since it was first detected in the province on March 12, but took a day off on Sunday.

In a news release, the province stressed that people should not take Manitoba's current COVID-19 case numbers as meaning the risk is reduced.

"The current statistics may be a reflection of the effect strict social distancing measures have had and reaffirms that these measures must be continued. Manitobans are reminded this is not the time to let their guard down," the release said.

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The release repeated a warning Roussin has been giving Manitobans all week: don't get together with people you don't live with for Easter, Passover or other celebrations.

"Actions taken today will affect case numbers in the weeks ahead. All Manitobans must remain vigilant to flatten the curve of this virus," the release said.

Some community testing sites have changed their hours of operation for the long weekend. Sites in Thompson, Flin Flon and The Pas will be open daily through the weekend, with reduced hours of 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Testing sites in Selkirk, Portage la Prairie, Steinbach and Winkler will keep regular hours this weekend.

In Winnipeg, the Mount Carmel Clinic is closed Sunday. Winnipeg's three other testing sites, and the assessment clinic at the St. James Centennial Pool, will be open with regular hours throughout the long weekend.