Three more deaths and 86 new cases of COVID-19 were announced in Manitoba Wednesday.

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Three more deaths and 86 new cases of COVID-19 were announced in Manitoba Wednesday.

There are 53 new cases in the Winnipeg health region, 16 in the Northern health region, seven in Interlake-Eastern and five each in Prairie Mountain and the Southern health region.

As of Wednesday, there are 560 cases of highly contagious variants in Manitoba; 490 of those are the B.1.1.7 variant. Of the highly contagious variant cases, 225 are still considered active, according to provincial data.

On Wednesday, the province announced the deaths of a woman in her 50s from the Prairie Mountain region, a man in his 70s from the Winnipeg health region and a man in his 80s from the Southern health region. The virus has claimed the lives of 954 Manitobans thus far.

Test-positivity rates are at 5.3 per cent provincewide and 5.2 per cent in Winnipeg.

There are 142 COVID patients in hospital, 37 of them in intensive care. More than half are no longer infectious.

On Wednesday, the province opened up vaccine eligibility to all Manitobans 59 and older, and First Nations members 39 and older.

The B.1.1.7 variant (first detected in the U.K.) is becoming the dominant strain in Manitoba.