Manitoba’s health minister and chief public health officer will give an update on the province’s ongoing fight against COVID-19 Monday.
The 1 p.m. press conference comes as Manitoba is seeing an uptick in positive testing for the virus, including 35 new cases reported Sunday and 16 reported on Saturday.
Global News will stream the event live in this story.
As of Sunday, a total of 542 people have contracted the novel coronavirus in Manitoba since March. Six people were in hospital — three of them in intensive care as of Sunday. Of the 542 known infections, 182 cases are still active, while 352 people have recovered. Eight people have died.
While many of the cases reported Sunday appear linked to known clusters in the Southern Health health region and the city of Brandon or are close contacts of a previously announced case, the province said there may be a small number of cases of unknown acquisition in those areas.
Many of the recent cases, including the majority of Saturday’s new infections, are connected to a cluster in Brandon — as of Friday, 34 people have been infected in the city.
Those cases are all linked to one person who returned to Brandon from eastern Canada and did not properly self-isolate.
The western Manitoba city’s Maple Leaf Foods plant has seen at least 10 workers infected with the virus, but Roussin and the company say the employees were not infected at work.
Seven of the new cases are workers at a business in Brandon, but Roussin would not expand when asked on Sunday which business.
However, the union that represents workers at the pork plant, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 832, said eight more employees have tested positive for COVID-19 — bringing the total to 18.
A handful of restaurants in Brandon, including a Tim Hortons and a McDonald’s, have closed after reporting employees tested positive for the virus.
Manitoba had gone nearly half the month of July without reporting a single new case of the virus. But that streak ended July 14 when five new cases were identified. Since then 212 new cases have been reported in Manitoba.
Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.
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