Care home deaths top 200, with more than 1,500 cases: The latest on Manitoba outbreaks

The earliest doses of a COVID-19 vaccine could arrive in Manitoba as early as next week, pending Health Canada approval.

It’s unclear how many doses Manitoba will receive, but available quantities of the vaccine are expected to remain limited well into the New Year, Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin said Monday. 

Public health officials have begun to clear some long-standing data backlogs that have distorted COVID-19 statistics in the province. The number of active cases fell by more than 4,000, and the number of people in hospital with COVID-19 also fell, while the number of health-care workers infected with the virus rose by 125, although some backlog remains. 

On Saturday, a Manitoba court denied Winnipeg’s Springs Church an exemption from health orders banning faith-based gatherings. The church wanted an exception made for drive-in services. Despite Springs Church’s court loss, the Church of God near Steinbach went ahead with yet another drive-in service on Sunday.

The chief of Shamattawa First Nation says a military deployment of six Canadian Rangers won’t be enough to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the community, where nearly one in five people have tested positive. 

Latest outbreak numbers, at a glance

Health care

There are currently 10 active COVID-19 outbreaks at health-care centres in Manitoba, including five Winnipeg hospitals.

Outbreaks at Carman Memorial Hospital in Carman, St. Boniface Hospital in Winnipeg and Victoria General Hospital’s 5 North and 5 South units were declared over as of Dec. 3.

An outbreak at the Swan Valley Health Centre in Swan River had been declared over on Nov. 20, but another outbreak was declared on Dec. 7.

  • Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg:
    • Five people have died, while 52 patients and 37 staff have tested positive as of Dec. 1, due to outbreaks in multiple units at Health Sciences Centre.
    • An outbreak in the hospital’s GA4 unit was declared on Nov. 4, and declared over on Dec. 5. It resulted in the deaths of three patients, along with the infection of 23 patients and 19 staff, Manitoba Shared Health says.
    • On Nov. 16, Shared Health announced outbreaks also had been declared in the hospital’s GH3 and GA3 units.
    • As of Dec. 1, one person had died and nine patients and eight staff had tested positive in GH3. One patient has died, and eight patients and five staff have tested positive in the GA3 unit. In the hospital’s GD4 unit, 15 patients and six staff have tested positive, a Shared Health spokesperson said on Friday.
  • St. Boniface Hospital in Winnipeg:
    • In an update on Nov. 23, the hospital said “the number of units classified as outbreak units has been reduced from two (E5 and E6) to zero.”
    • A total of 29 patients and 20 staff tested positive after an outbreak that was declared on Oct. 16. A total of 13 people died in connection with the outbreak.
  • Victoria General Hospital in Winnipeg
    • A total of 15 people have died due to an outbreak at the hospital as of Dec. 3, a provincial spokesperson said. A total of 86 people have tested positive.
    • Most of the cases — 78 of them —  and all of the deaths are linked to the 5N and 5S units. A total of 43 staff and 35 “non-staff” have tested positive in those units.
    • That outbreak was declared over on Dec. 3, but the hospital also has a second outbreak in Unit 4 South, the geriatric rehabilitation unit. Four staff and nine patients have tested positive in that unit as of Dec. 4, according to the hospital.
  • Bethesda Regional Health Centre in Steinbach:
    • Three people have died and 35 people have been infected due to multiple outbreaks at the centre. 
    • One person died as a result of an outbreak declared in the hospital’s medicine unit on Oct. 29. That outbreak was linked to 23 infections in total, with 16 staff and seven “non-staff” infected.
    • An outbreak was also declared in the emergency department at the centre, where two patients have died, and two staff and eight “non-staff” have tested positive.
    • On Nov. 17, the province announced an outbreak had been declared in the centre’s surgical and obstetrics unit. The outbreaks in the surgical and emergency units have been declared over as of Nov. 25.
  • Swan Valley Health Centre in Swan River: 
    • The province declared an outbreak at this health centre and the attached Swan Valley Personal Care Home on Oct. 25. That outbreak was declared over on Nov. 20, after resulting in six staff infections and five “non-staff” infections, according to the province.
    • Another outbreak was declared on Dec. 7.
  • Carman Memorial Hospital in Carman:
    • One person has died as a result of the outbreak, with four staff and eight “non-staff” infections, as of Nov. 30. The outbreak was declared over on Dec. 1.
  • Grace Hospital in Winnipeg:
    • Health officials announced an outbreak in the hospital’s Unit 3 North, where four staff and six patients have tested positive as of Dec. 7. Four deaths have also been linked to that outbreak, the hospital says.
    • A second outbreak was declared in the hospital’s Unit 4 South on Nov. 27, where two patients have tested positive and one person has died, the hospital says.
    • A third outbreak was declared in Unit 2 South on Nov. 30. As of Dec. 7, seven staff and six patients have tested positive in that unit’s outbreak, and two people have died, the hospital says.
    • A fourth outbreak in Unit 3 South was declared on Dec. 1. Two patients had tested positive in that unit, as of Dec. 7.
  • Concordia Hospital in Winnipeg:
    • An outbreak was declared in Unit N3 West on Nov. 26, while a second was declared in Unit N2 East on Dec. 1. As of Dec. 7, six staff and 17 patients have tested positive, the hospital says.
    • Between the two units, there were 12 positive in-patient cases as of Dec. 4.
  • Lakeshore General Hospital in Ashern
    • An outbreak was declared at the hospital on Nov. 30. One staff member had tested positive as of Dec. 7.
  • Seven Oaks General Hospital in Winnipeg:
    • An outbreak was declared in the hospital’s Family Medical Unit 5U4-7 on Dec. 1. As of Dec. 7, five patients had tested positive, including one who later died, the hospital says. Two of the sick patients were isolating in hospital as of Dec. 4.
  • St. Anthony’s General Hospital in The Pas:
    • An outbreak was declared at the hospital as of Dec. 1. As of Dec. 7, two “non-staff” had tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Morris General Hospital in Morris:
    • An outbreak was declared at the hospital on Dec. 2. As of Dec. 7, one “non-staff” had tested positive for COVID-19.

Care homes

Manitoba has declared COVID-19 outbreaks at more than 60 care homes and assisted living centres. The outbreaks have resulted in more than 200 deaths and over 1,547 cases as of Dec. 7.

The deadliest outbreak at a Manitoba care home is at Maples Long Term Care Home, which is owned by the private company Revera. Before that, the deadliest outbreak at a Manitoba care home was at Parkview Place in Winnipeg, which is also owned by Revera.

The provincial government has launched an investigation into the two care homes.

Notes:

  • Some outbreaks have not yet been entered into the province’s database, so totals are not available at this time for some facilities.
  • Outbreaks declared at St. Paul’s Personal Care Home in Dauphin and the Kekinan Centre in Winnipeg are over as of Dec. 2.

Schools

Manitoba has recorded 1,566 cases of COVID-19 related to schools as of Dec. 4, a spokesperson for the province said — more than double the 675 total cases just over two weeks ago, on Nov. 17. A total of 1,169 of those cases were students, and 397 were staff members.

“The increase in case numbers is due to the time frame since the data was last reported, as well as refinements in the case identification and reporting process,” a provincial spokesperson said in an email Thursday.

“For the most part, these cases do not reflect transmission in the school. To date, we have seen evidence of in-school transmission in six schools.”

Detailed data on school outbreaks has not been provided since Nov. 17, though a provincial spokesperson said on Friday there are no longer any active outbreaks in Manitoba schools.

  • Centre Scolaire Léo-Rémillard in Winnipeg: outbreak declared Oct. 30. As of Dec. 4, there were four staff members and 24 students who had tested positive, the province said. Health officials declared this outbreak over on Nov. 27.
  • Collège Louis Riel in Winnipeg: outbreak declared Oct. 29, entire school later moved to remote learning. As of Dec. 4, there were eight staff members and 12 students who had tested positive, the province said. Health officials declared this outbreak over on Nov. 27.
  • Arborgate School in La Broquerie: An outbreak was declared on Oct. 22. As of Dec. 4, there were four staff members and two students who had had tested positive, the province said.
  • Reston School in Reston: An outbreak was declared on Nov. 13. As of Dec. 4, there were eight students and one staff member who had tested positive.

The province’s first school outbreak was at Winnipeg’s John Pritchard School, which the province says was linked to 28 cases of COVID-19: four among staff members and 24 among students. It was declared over on Oct. 20.

Another outbreak, at Bird’s Hill School in East St. Paul, was declared on Oct. 20, and was declared over on Nov. 10.

You can find the full list of possible exposures, including school exposures, on the province’s website. 

Keeyask

The province declared a COVID-19 outbreak at the Keeyask generating station construction site in northern Manitoba on Nov. 3. The outbreak was declared over on Nov. 30.

On Nov. 16, Manitoba Hydro announced it was bringing workers back to the construction site. 

As of Nov. 27, there were 28 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 among Manitoba Hydro workers at the site, and 11 presumptive cases. All of those are now considered recovered, though, and Hydro now says there are no active cases at Keeyask.

First Nations

The Assembly of Manitoba First Nations and the Manitoba First Nations COVID-19 Pandemic Response Co-ordination Team said on Nov. 13 that more than half of the 63 First Nations in the province have reported cases since the pandemic began in March.

As of Dec. 4, there were a total of 1,815 active cases of COVID-19 among First Nations people in the province, the pandemic response team says. That includes 602 active cases on-reserve and 1,213 off-reserve.

Correctional facilities

As of Dec. 7, there were active cases of COVID-19 in nine correctional facilities in Manitoba, with 500 total infections — 101 among staff and 399 among “non-staff.”

Here are the COVID-19 case numbers for provincial correctional facilities:

Provincial numbers don’t include an outbreak at the federal Stony Mountain Institution, declared on Nov. 14. As of Dec. 7, it had led to 146 infections — 127 inmates and 19 staff members — making it the second-largest outbreak in a correctional facility in the province.

The greatest caseload by far is at Headingley Correctional Centre, where an outbreak was declared on Oct. 13. That outbreak has led to infections in 44 staff and 206 “non-staff” as of Dec. 7.

An outbreak at the Women’s Correctional Centre in Headingley was declared over on Nov. 30.