This story will be updated as the press conference continues.
Manitoba’s Chief Public Health Officer says the province’s capital city will move to a level Orange restriction on Monday, meaning masks will be mandatory in all public places in the city.
The announcement came Friday when Dr. Brent Roussin called a last-minute press conference at 1:30 p.m. He announced 54 new cases of the novel coronavirus, 44 of those in Winnipeg.
One previous case was removed from Winnipeg, bringing the net total of new cases to 43, he said.
“This is a very important change,” said Roussin Friday. We need to begin to reduce the numbers of close contacts outside our homes.
“Outdoors is much better than enclosed indoor spaces.”
Roussin said if people find themselves indoors in a closed-in space, they should leave.
Gathering sizes will be pared back down to 10 people, both indoors and outdoors, he said.
Manitoba health officials reported 37 new cases of COVID-19 and officially confirmed the province’s latest death Thursday.
Friday’s press conference comes as Winnipeg has seen case counts steadily increase, outbreaks have been declared at several personal care homes, and the number of schools that have reported cases since classes returned Sept. 8 has risen to double digits.
Roussin said Thursday health officials are seeing an increase in cases linked to bars, pubs, and restaurants in the city.
He said roughly half of all the cases reported in Winnipeg in recent weeks have been traced back to city bars and restaurants.
“Many cases are young adults in their 20s and have many various exposures at restaurants and bars and throughout the city,” he said.
”We’ve had a number of cases that have visited more than one bar in a single evening.”
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