106 new COVID-19 cases, 2 deaths reported in Manitoba on Thursday

There are 106 new COVID-19 cases in Manitoba on Thursday and two more people have died from the illness, the province says in a news release.

Most of the new cases are in the Winnipeg health region, which reported 64 new infections, the release said. 

The rest are split between the Southern Health region, with 18, the Northern Health Region, with 14, the Interlake-Eastern health region, with nine, and the Prairie Mountain Health region, with one.

The deaths announced Thursday are two men: one in his 50s from the Winnipeg health region and one in his 80s from the Southern Health region.

The younger man had contracted the B.1.1.7 coronavirus variant, also known as the alpha variant, which was first seen in the U.K., the release said. The older man had a variant that’s still listed as unspecified.

The deaths bring Manitoba’s total linked to COVID-19 to 1,134, the release said.

Manitoba’s five-day test positivity rate has dropped to 6.4 per cent, the release said, down from 7.1 on Wednesday. Winnipeg’s rate rose slightly to 6.7 per cent from 6.6.

There are now 212 Manitobans hospitalized after getting COVID-19, which marks a drop of 10 since Wednesday. The number of people in intensive care is now 64, down by six.

Of those intensive care patients, 12 are still in hospitals outside the province, the release said, with 11 in Ontario and one in Alberta. To date, 35 people who were sent outside Manitoba for critical care as the province worked to free up space in its strained hospitals have been brought back.

Of the 64 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, 13 are under age 40, a Shared health spokesperson said in an email.

Manitoba also reported 82 newly identified cases of more infectious coronavirus variants on Thursday.

That includes 64 new cases linked to the alpha variant and one more infection connected to the highly contagious B.1.617.2 variant, also known as the delta variant, first seen in India.

It also includes 17 cases that are linked to variants still listed as unspecified, the province’s online variant dashboard says.

As of Thursday, 30.8 per cent of Manitobans age 12 and older have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the province’s online vaccine dashboard says. For those with at least one dose, that figure is now 71.9 per cent.

Since the start of the pandemic, 55,692 Manitobans have tested positive for COVID-19. That number includes 52,843 people who are considered recovered and 1,715 cases still deemed active, according to a corrected news release from the province.

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