Manitoba reports 2 COVID-19 deaths, drop in new hospitalizations

Health officials say two more Manitobans with COVID-19 have died while the number of new hospitalizations linked to the virus dropped last week.

The province’s latest epidemiology update shows 52 people were admitted to hospital between July 10 to July 16, down from 59 the week before.

Read more: Manitoba expands COVID vaccine eligibility to include kids four and under

Of the latest hospitalizations, two required ICU, according to the report.

Exactly how many people are currently in hospital and ICU as a result of COVID-19 isn’t clear, because the province no longer reports those numbers.

Click to play video: 'No immediate plans to expand COVID-19 booster eligibility in Manitoba: top doc' No immediate plans to expand COVID-19 booster eligibility in Manitoba: top doc

No immediate plans to expand COVID-19 booster eligibility in Manitoba: top doc

Officials say the number of new cases also fell, with 171 lab-confirmed infections identified last week, down from 229 the previous week.

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With an average of 276 tests completed a day, the positivity rate of lab tests dropped to 13.9 per cent from 14.8 per cent the previous week.

Provincial case counts and test positivity rates don’t necessarily give an accurate picture of active infection rates, however, because the government has significantly scaled back testing and the data doesn’t include the results of tests done at home.

Read more: No immediate plans to expand COVID-19 booster eligibility in Manitoba: top doc

While two deaths were reported in the latest update, Manitoba’s COVID-19 death toll since March 2020 rose three from last week to 2,056.

The province has told Global News the number of deaths can fluctuate week to week as previous cases are confirmed or removed from the list.

Officials said there were no new outbreaks at long-term care homes between July 10 to July 16, but one new outbreak was reported at the Grace Hospital in Winnipeg.

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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.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, visit our coronavirus page.

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