It doesn’t take advanced math to recognize that the trend of COVID-19 cases in the north and Manitoba as a whole is rising alarmingly, but a look at the data shows how quickly the situation has gone from one of mild concern to one that required the stringent restrictions put in place at 12:01 a.m. Nov. 12, when the entire province was moved to the red/critical level of the provincial government’s Pandemic Response System.
In the north, it took 209 days from the time the first positive test in the region was reported on March 29 to breach the 100-case barrier on Oct. 24, when there had been 106 cases in total since the pandemic began. It took a week for that number to double to 212 on Oct. 31 and then four days for it to go past 300, with a running total of 309 by Nov. 4. Five days later, on Nov. 9, the north passed 400 total cases, reaching 411 and, with 489 cases as of Nov. 12, there will likely have been more than 500 cases in Northern Manitoba by tomorrow, given that there have been only 10 days in the last 30 with fewer than 10 new cases being announced in the north and only one of those days was in the last two weeks.
Provincewide, the trend for COVID-19 case growth doesn’t look any better. From March 13, when there were two cases in Manitoba, it took only 18 days to pass 100, on March 30. The 200-case mark was passed on April 4 and then things slowed down, as it took until June 3 to reach 300 cases and until July 26 to pass 400. The growth rate increased after the 500-case milestone was passed Aug. 7. Five days later there were more than 600, four days after that more than 700 and four days after that more than 800. It then took only two days to pass 900 and one more to reach 1,000 on Aug. 23. The next 1,000 cases took 36 days – until Sept. 28 – but by Oct. 14 there were 3,000 and by Oct. 22 the 4,000-case mark was passed. Since then it has taken less than a week for 1,000 more cases to pop up. From the day Manitoba passed 9,000 cases on Nov. 10, it took only two more days to reach 10,000.
The number of deaths also increased substantially since the end of September, when there were a total of 21 deaths since the pandemic began. Throughout October, 61 people died, and 55 have died already in November with more than half the month still ahead.
A little over a month ago, on Oct. 10, the test positivity rate fro Manitoba was 3.1 per cent. It more than doubled to 6.6 per cent in the next 12 days and reached double digits on Nov. 9 and 11 per cent two days later.