2020 coronavirus pandemic in Manitoba

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2020 coronavirus pandemic in Manitoba
Virus strainSARS-CoV-2
LocationManitoba, Canada
First outbreakWuhan, Hubei, China
Index caseWinnipeg
Arrival dateMarch 12, 2020
(3 weeks and 4 days)
Confirmed cases204[1]
Official website

The 2020 coronavirus pandemic in Manitoba is an ongoing viral pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), a novel infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). As of April 6, 2020, 13,476 tests have been conducted in the Canadian province of Manitoba, with 204 confirmed cases of the disease, and 2 deaths.[1]


The first three cases were reported on March 12.[2] All cases have been linked to international travel.[3] All of Winnipeg's cases were identified after March 12.[3] In Manitoba's first case, the person had returned to Winnipeg from the Philippines, and self-isolated at home.[4] All subsequent cases were found in Winnipeg.[5] On March 18, officials announced the first probable case that could not be linked to travel, or contact with known patients.[6] However, the case was later determined to be a false positive.[7]

On April 4, a total of 12 new confined cases where announced bringing the provinces total to 194.[2]

Government response[edit]

Manitoba's initial response to the first coronavirus cases in the province was to recommend against international travel, and to ask anyone returning from traveling to self-isolate for fourteen days.[8] On March 14, the rate of testing was increased to more than 500 tests a day.[9] All patients in Manitoba's intensive care units, as well as those admitted to a hospital for respiratory illnesses, have also been tested.[10]

On March 20, Premier Brian Pallister announced a state of emergency under the provincial Emergency Measures Act, effective for 30 days.[11][12] The order restricted public gatherings to no more than 50 people, required retail stores and public transit to enforce physical distancing, limited hospitality businesses and theatres to 50 people or half their normal capacity, whichever is less, and shut down all fitness facilities. Breaches of the order could trigger fines of up to $50,000 or six months imprisonment.[citation needed]

While outlining the need for physical distancing measures, Pallister also emphasised the need to keep in touch with each other. "Social distancing does not mean social isolation," he said. Referring to particularly vulnerable friend and family members, he said: "Contact them, make sure that they have a sense of being connected to you. Make sure that they're able to be confident that they're part of a world that isn't just their room."[11]

On March 21, a drive-through testing centre opened in Winnipeg, at a site close to the Victoria General Hospital. As with walk-in testing centres, a referral will be necessary to use the drive-through testing centre. As of March 21, 2020, there were four other walk-in test centres in Winnipeg, as well as test centres in Brandon, Thompson, Selkirk, Flin Flon, Steinbach and The Pas.[13]

On March 27, the province implemented informational checkpoints at the provincial borders on the Trans-Canada Highway, and on the Saskatchewan border on highways 16, 5, and 2. Vehicles entering Manitoba will be briefly stopped and provided with an informational pamphlet on health risks and travel restrictions. The province has not yet implemented entry restrictions or self-isolation requirements for interprovincial travel.[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "COVID-19 Updates". Province of Manitoba. Retrieved April 6, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Province of Manitoba | Coronavirus". Province of Manitoba. Retrieved March 23, 2020.
  3. ^ a b "Tracking every case of COVID-19 in Canada". CTV News. March 13, 2020. Archived from the original on March 15, 2020. Retrieved March 16, 2020.
  4. ^ "Province of Manitoba | Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Bulletin #8". News.gov.mb.ca. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
  5. ^ Pindera, Erik (March 14, 2020). "Winnipeg public spaces still bustling despite confirmed COVID-19 cases". Global News. Retrieved March 19, 2020.
  6. ^ Frew, Nicholas (March 18, 2020). "16 Manitoba coronavirus cases believed travel-related, health officials still investigating 17th". CBC News. Winnipeg. Retrieved March 24, 2020.
  7. ^ Petz, Sarah (March 23, 2020). "Cases of COVID-19 identified in Manitoba remain at 20, after previous case ruled out". CBC News. Winnipeg. Retrieved March 24, 2020.
  8. ^ Three new presumptive COVID-19 cases in Manitoba
  9. ^ "Province of Manitoba | COVID-19 Bulletin #12". News.gov.mb.ca. Archived from the original on March 17, 2020. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
  10. ^ Kives, Bartley (March 16, 2020). "Winnipeg man in his 80s tests positive for COVID-19 as Manitoba reaches 8 cases". CBC News. Winnipeg. Retrieved March 24, 2020.
  11. ^ a b "Manitoba declares state of emergency amid COVID-19 pandemic", Charles Lefebvre, CTV News, March 20, 2020.
  12. ^ The Emergency Measures Act, CCSM, c. E80.
  13. ^ Coronavirus: First drive-thru COVID-19 testing centre opens in Winnipeg
  14. ^ Froese, Ian (March 27, 2020). "Manitoba establishing checkpoints at provincial borders to warn travellers about COVID-19 risks". CBC News. Retrieved March 27, 2020.