Provincial health officials have announced 17 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba.
Dr. Brent Roussin, the province’s chief public health officer, made the announcement on Friday afternoon.
Roussin said this brings the province’s total number of lab-confirmed and probable positive cases to 491 since early March.
Of the new cases, 10 are from the Prairie Mountain Health Region, five are in the Winnipeg Health Region, and two are from the Southern Health Region.
From the Prairie Mountain Health Region:
Two are males between the age of 10 and 19;
Two are women in their 20s;
Two are males between the age of zero to nine;
One is a man in his 30s;
Two are women in their 30s; and
One is a man in his 20s.
From the Winnipeg Health Region:
Two are women in their 60s;
One is a man in his 30s;
One is a woman in her 30s; and
One is a male between the ages of 10 and 19.
In the Southern Health Region, the cases include a man in his 30s and a man in his 50s.
Roussin said the current test positivity rate is 1.10 per cent.
There are currently nine people in hospital, including three in intensive.
The province has 132 active cases and 351 people have recovered from the virus.
The number of deaths in the province related to COVID-19 remains at eight.
On Thursday, 1,452 tests were performed, bringing the total to 96,999 since early February.
POTENTIAL COVID EXPOSURE AT TIM HORTONS IN BRANDON
Roussin also mentioned there was potential exposure to COVID-19 at the Tim Hortons in Brandon along the Trans Canada Highway on Aug. 1.
Tim Hortons confirmed with CTV News on Thursday that an employee tested posted for the virus.
Roussin is advising that people who went to the restaurant on that day should self-monitor and if symptoms develop they should be tested.
HEALTH OFFICIALS SEE COMMUNITY TRANSMISSION IN BRANDON
He also mentioned that due to the recent cluster of cases in the Brandon area, health officials have started to see community transmission in western Manitoba.
“This is what we expect when we start seeing increasing numbers. So again, I am advising people, especially in western Manitoba, to ensure you are following public health advice to reduce your risk,” said Roussin.
He added that people in that region should think about wearing a mask more frequently to further prevent a possible spread in the community.
NO ROOM FOR COVID SHAME, ROUSSIN SAYS
Roussin also reiterated that there should be no shame towards those who get COVID-19. He said there is no room for shame or judgement and stigmatizing others can have a negative impact on the province’s fight against the virus.
“People who test positive, we rely on them to be very forthcoming, providing us with as much details as possible and we decrease the likelihood of that if we stigmatize those people.”
He said Manitobans need to fight this virus with knowledge and understanding.
Health officials are also noting that the drive-thru testing site in Steinbach will now be open on Saturdays for the rest of the month from 8:45 a.m. to 3 p.m. by appointment only. People are told to call 204-346-7016 to book an appointment.