A day after the province’s chief public health officer held his last regularly scheduled COVID-19 press conference, Manitoba reported that 20 people with the virus have died since March 11, including three from the province’s north.
The northern deaths, reported March 11, March 14 and March 16, were a woman in her 50s, a man in his 50s and a boy less than one year old, according to the provincial government’s media bulletin. 81 northerners with COVID-19 have died since the pandemic began just over two years ago out of a total provincial death toll of 1,723 people.
There are 395 people with COVID in hospital in Manitoba as of March 17, including 17 people in intensive care. More than 10 per cent of all COVID hospital patients — 43 — are from Northern Manitoba and four of those in ICU are from the region.
The province says 119 new hospitalizations of people with COVID occurred in the week ending March 16, down about 16 per cent from the previous week. There were seven new COVID-positive patients admitted to ICU that week, down 68 per cent from the previous week.
There are still active cases listed in all but two northern health districts, four of which have 100 cases or more. There were 57 confirmed cases in the Thompson/Mystery Lake health district March 17.
Although the province is shutting down 18 COVID-19 testing sites, those in Flin Flon, the Pas and Thompson will remain open. COVID-19 PCR testing is limited to eligible people, who include pre-operative patients and those at high risk for severe outcomes from COVID-19 who may be eligible for treatment.
Beginning March 24, the province will update COVID-19 information in weekly epidemiology reports. COVID vaccination dashboards will continue to be updated.
All remaining provincial public health orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic expired just after midnight March 15.