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  • Writer's pictureMyrna Driedger


Province of Manitoba Media Bulletin

March 18, 2020

Public health officials advise that two additional presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Manitoba.  This brings the total number of lab-confirmed positive and presumptive positive cases in Manitoba to 17. Case information includes: •    case 16 is a woman in her 50s who lives in Winnipeg; and •    case 17 is a man in his 70s who lives in Winnipeg. Public health investigations have begun and at this time, it appears that both cases are travel related. Manitoba’s first drive-thru community testing site for COVID-19 opened this afternoon in Selkirk.  The new site will see patients referred to the site drive up to be screened by health-care workers.  If necessary, they will be registered, tested and given advice on what to do while awaiting results without leaving their vehicle.  The Selkirk testing site, at 622 Superior Ave., will be open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.  It is the ninth dedicated testing site to open in Manitoba in the past week.  There are four sites in Winnipeg, as well as locations in Brandon, Thompson, Flin Flon and The Pas. These testing sites are by referral only and are not walk-in clinics.  Any person concerned about their exposure to or risk of having COVID-19 should call Health Links–Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll-free at 1-888-315-9257 before arriving at a testing site. CancerCare Manitoba is taking proactive measures to help reduce the impact of COVID-19.  Starting Thursday, breast cancer screening services at BreastCheck will be suspended for at least two weeks.  Clients will be notified directly to confirm that their appointments will be affected.  Clients can call (toll-free) 1-855-95-CHECK (24325) if they have any questions or concerns. All hemodialysis patients need to continue to go for dialysis treatments.  Hospitals and dialysis units are implementing many measures to ensure all hemodialysis patients are provided the safest care.  Dialysis treatments are life sustaining and going to a hospital for regularly scheduled dialysis treatments in a carefully managed environment is the SAFEST option for hemodialysis patients. Patients who skip or miss dialysis treatments may have adverse health outcomes and require emergency medical services such as urgent care or emergency department care.  Dialysis patients who have travelled internationally in the past 14 days or who experience flu-like symptoms should still call Health Links-Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll-free at 1-888-315-9257 and their dialysis unit before going to the dialysis unit or hospital. Starting tomorrow, Employment and Income Assistance (EIA) clients are asked to contact staff through the call centre whenever possible, in order to follow public health recommendations on public distancing.  Phone lines are open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at 204-948-2888 (inside Winnipeg) or 1-855-944-8111 (toll-free, outside Winnipeg).  Clients can also email the department at  All EIA offices are still open during normal business hours (Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) but it is recommended clients use phone or email options and avoid in-person visits. In light of recommendations about social distancing and limiting public gatherings, Manitoba Conservation and Climate has cancelled all planned interpreter-led events in Manitoba parks and has closed interpretive centres until further notice.  Parks remain open for day use at this time.  As long as people are healthy and able to do so, they can explore trails in provincial parks on their own or in small groups, while using good social distancing practices. The Parks Reservation Service will launch as scheduled next week.  For health and safety reasons, no in-person reservations will be accepted and reservations must be made online at or through the call centre, at 204-948-3333 for people in Winnipeg and 1-888-482-2267 for all other areas of the province.  Users should log in to their account before the launch dates to confirm account information and to review reservation and camping policies. For more information and to access the online screening tool for COVID-19, visit:

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