Manitoba hasn’t yet reached the peak of Omicron infections, the province’s top doctor said Wednesday.
Chief provincial public health officer Dr. Brent Roussin
it’s something that we’re actively monitoring."
The number of Manitoba deaths from COVID-19 infections rose by 12 Wednesday as hospitalizations continued to increase.
Public-health officials reported the deaths of 10 Winnipeggers, including three men and three women in their 80s, a man in his 70s, two women in their 60s, and a man in his 40s.
A man in his 70s from the Prairie Mountain health region and a man in his 70s from Southern Health-Sante Sud died as well.
The province also provided details on three deaths reported Tuesday. They include: a man in his 80s, a woman in her 90s, and a man in his 90s connected to the outbreak at Actionmarguerite St. Boniface, all from Winnipeg.
Dr. Joss Reimer, medical lead for the province’s COVID-19 vaccine task force, urged Manitobans over the age of 50 to receive their booster dose as soon as possible.
"We really can’t ignore what we’re seeing in the hospitals," Reimer told a media briefing Wednesday afternoon.
The risk of experiencing a severe case of COVID-19 goes up significantly for people who are over the age of 50, she said, adding less than 61 per cent of Manitobans over the age of 50 are currently protected by a booster shot.
The immunization clinic at Winnipeg’s RBC Convention Centre will begin accepting walk-in clients Thursday, Reimer said.
In-school immunization clinics are also resuming and more information will be shared with school communities.
The second round of vaccines for children age five to 11 also begin this week. Eight weeks have passed since the pediatric vaccine was first available in the province and appointments can be booked now, Reimer said.
As of Wednesday morning, there were 631 people in hospital with COVID-19, an increase of 11 from Tuesday. There were 50 patients with the virus in intensive care, two more than Tuesday.
There were 919 new cases confirmed through PCR testing since Tuesday. The test-positivity rate in the province was 33.1 per cent. Just 3,047 tests were processed yesterday.
The province is no longer tracking the majority of positive COVID-19 cases because PCR testing is limited and Manitobans using rapid tests are not able to report their results.
COVID-19 outbreaks were declared at St. Boniface Hospital — M2, River East Personal Care Home, Concordia Hospital — N3 East, Health Sciences Centre — PX2 East and Gillam Hospital, the province said.
Manitoba Justice reported 28 warnings and 27 tickets were issued related to public-health orders Jan. 6-10, including four $1,296 tickets to individuals; 21 $298 tickets to individuals for not wearing a mask in an indoor public place; and two $5,000 tickets to businesses.
More than two-thirds of the tickets were issued in the Southern Health region, the province said.