Arts & Life
Canstar Community News
The Manitoba government made a number of COVID-19-related announcements Friday, including the opening of a new COVID-19 test site in Brandon.
A new drive-thru test site at Brandon’s Keystone Centre is open as of 9 a.m. this morning, Health Minister Cameron Friesen announced Friday.
The site will immediately expand testing capacity in Brandon and will eventually be able to perform up to 120 tests per day, Friesen said.
"More testing sites mean Manitobans can access testing faster, and expanded contact tracing options means we will have more information we can use to combat the effects of COVID in our communities."
According to a government news release, the Keystone Centre site will operate from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and weekends and from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. The Keystone Centre is located at 1175 18th Street.
Friesen also announced that the Canadian Red Cross has been contracted by the government to provide additional contract tracing services for the province.
"Having the additional support from Red Cross builds contact tracing capacity, which is critical to managing increased case counts and a greater volume of associated close contacts." Friesen said.
Contact tracing involves identifying and notifying people who possibly made contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case.
The Manitoba government reported 75 new cases of COVID-19 and a five-day test positivity rate of 5.2 per cent as of 9:30 a.m. Friday.
Of the 75 new cases announced, one was identified in the Prairie Mountain Health region, seven cases in the Interlake-Eastern health region, two in the Northern health region, two in the Southern Health-Santé Sud health region and 63 in the Winnipeg health region.
There are 26 active COVID-19 cases in the Prairie Mountain health region, 11 of which are in Brandon. Two people remain in hospital, both in intensive care.
There are 1,582 active cases in the province, with 25 people in hospital and five in intensive care. Manitoba has had 3,173 confirmed cases of COVID-19 to date.
The current five-day test positivity rate is 5.2 per cent, an all-time high for the province, surpassing the five per cent positivity rate cited by the World Health Organization as the threshold for a region having COVID-19 infections under control.
Laboratory testing numbers indicate that 2,174 were performed Thursday, bringing the total number of tests completed since early February to 220,052.
Possible COVID-19 exposures have been reported for nine schools in the province, including in the Prairie Mountain Health region. A confirmed case of COVID-19 was identified at Gilbert Plains Elementary School in Gilbert Plains on Oct. 8 and 9, according to the provincial government’s list of possible exposures.
The school was first informed about the case on Oct. 14, according to a letter to parents and guardians from Prairie Mountain Health. The letter, also dated Oct. 14, was signed by PMH medical officer of health Dr. Amy Frykoda. The letter was made available on the Manitoba Health website.
The letter goes on to say that close contacts of the case have been identified and told to self-isolate. A public health investigation determined the exposure to be low risk and that the infection is not believed to have been acquired at the school.
The letter concludes with a note saying that Gilbert Plains Elementary School is not permitted to release any identifying information about the confirmed COVID-19 case to the public.
» Twitter: @emdashklatt
As we navigate through unprecedented times, our journalists are working harder than ever to bring you the latest local updates to keep you safe and informed.
Now, more than ever, we need your support.
Starting at $4.99/month you can access your Brandon Sun online and full access to all content as it appears on our website.Subscribe Now
or call circulation directly at (204) 727-0527.
Your pledge helps to ensure we provide the news that matters most to your community!