Manitoba health officials provide update on coronavirus fight Thursday

Manitoba’s top doctor will give a live COVID-19 update Thursday.

Dr. Brent Roussin, the province’s chief public health officer, has scheduled a press conference for 12:30 p.m. Global News will stream the event live in this story.

Read more: Over 300 Manitobans in hospital with coronavirus, 9 new deaths reported Wednesday

At his daily media briefing Wednesday, Roussin reported 349 new COVID-19 cases and nine additional deaths.

Manitoba has implemented a series of increasingly tough restrictions over the last two months as COVID-19 numbers have spiked.

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Manitoba reports 9 new COVID-19-related deaths' Coronavirus: Manitoba reports 9 new COVID-19-related deaths

Coronavirus: Manitoba reports 9 new COVID-19-related deaths

The most recent orders mandate mask use in all indoor public areas, require restaurants and bars to close except for takeout and delivery, and forbid people from having guests in their home, with some exceptions.

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The public health orders also require that when someone has come into close contact with a known COVID-19 case, that person must self-isolate, even from other members of his or her household.

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In the two weeks since the latest province-wide restrictions kicked in on Nov. 12, Manitoba has reported 5,619 new cases of the virus, and 134 Manitobans with COVID-19 have died.

Read more: Steinbach-area church fined $5,000 for not following COVID-19 health orders

Roussin has been pleading with Manitobans to stay home during the latest lockdown, as cases continue to put a strain on the province’s health-care system.

On Wednesday a record-setting 303 Manitobans were reported to be in hospital with 50 in intensive care.

While Manitoba continues to lead all other provinces in the per-capita rate of new infections, Roussin said Wednesday things could have been worse. The daily number of new cases has been relatively steady in recent days between 300 and 500.

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Coronavirus: Manitoba’s top doctor urges people to be respectful to contact tracers

“A few weeks ago, when we … decided to initiate the further restrictions, our projections were calling for up to 800 cases a day by Nov. 22,” he said.

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“So we haven’t seen the climb that we expected … but we certainly need to get those numbers down quite quickly.”

Read more: Yes, many COVID-19 patients have underlying conditions. But that shouldn’t be the focus: Dr. Roussin

Since March Manitoba has reported 14,907 cases of COVID-19 and 256 Manitobans with the virus have died.

–With files from The Canadian Press

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.

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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.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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