The province is reporting 273 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba and seven more deaths on Sunday, according to a news release.

That brings the total number of deaths related to the novel coronavirus to 490.

It’s the lowest number of deaths reported in a single day since Nov. 23, according to provincial data.

All but one of the seven deaths are linked to existing outbreaks, including:

A woman in her 70s linked to an outbreak at Kin Place in Oakbank. A man in his 60s linked to an outbreak at the St. Norbert Personal Care Home. A woman in her 70s linked to an outbreak at the Charleswood Care Centre. A man in his 70s linked to an outbreak in the N3W unit at Concordia Hospital. A man in his 80s linked to an outbreak at the Maples Long Term Care Home. A man in his 80s linked to an outbreak at Park Manor.

A woman in her 60s from the Northern health region is among the fatalities

Of the new cases, most — 166 — are in Winnipeg with another 50 new cases in the Northern health region, 22 in the Southern Health region, 18 in the Prairie Mountain Health Region and 17 in the Interlake-Eastern health region.

There are 5,728 active cases —  though public health officials have noted that number is still inflated because of a data entry backlog — and 14,805 people have recovered from the virus.

Manitoba’s five-day COVID-19 test positivity rate — a rolling average of the tests that come back positive — is down to 13.5 per cent. In Winnipeg, the rate is down to 13 per cent.

There are 304 people in hospital with 43 people in intensive care due to COVID-19.

That figure reflects the number of COVID-19 patients in hospital who are still considered to be in their infectious period. The province did not release a total number that includes longer-term, non-infectious patients.

On Friday, Manitoba Shared Health Chief Nursing Officer Lanette Siragusa said there were 388 people in hospital who had COVID-19 at that point, or had been infected in the past. That included 298 still in their infectious period as of Friday and another 90 patients who were past that stage, but still needed in-patient care, she said.

New downtown testing centre to open

The update comes after the province announced 18 more COVID-19-related deaths and 360 new cases on Saturday.

That is the second-highest number of deaths reported on a single day since the start of the pandemic, following 19 deaths announced on Dec. 5 and matching the 18 announced on Wednesday. 

On Monday, people living in Winnipeg’s downtown core will have better access to COVID-19 testing.

A new walk-in testing centre in the Garrick Centre at 330 Garry Street will open on Dec. 14 and operate from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.

On Saturday, 2,145 tests were completed, bringing the total number of lab tests completed since early February to 388,356.

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