Novel Coronavirus COVID-19
 


Public Health Case and Contact Investigations in Manitoba


Case and contact investigation of confirmed cases of COVID-19 remains one of the most effective public health strategies to reduce transmission in our province.

This work will be undertaken by regional public health staff, the Public Health COVID-19 Contact Centre, Canadian Red Cross and other partners to support case investigation, contact tracing and daily follow-up of cases and contacts during their self-isolation. Statistics Canada, through an agreement with the federal government, will also be providing contact tracing services to Manitoba.


Automated Calling Introduced to Complement Monitoring and Follow-up

Automated calling will be used to assist with open case and contact monitoring. A contact is someone who has been identified as having prolonged exposure to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Individuals will continue to receive personal calls from Manitoba public health officials. However, the automated calls will make the monitoring process more efficient and effective. 

If you tested positive for COVID-19, or were in close contact with someone who tested positive and were asked to self-isolate, you may get a follow-up automated phone call as part of your monitoring and investigation cycle of care.

You will be asked important information about testing, self-isolation and other public health guidelines in a question-and-answer format, with answers provided via keypad number options.

It is very important that the person being called is the person who takes the call (e.g., not someone else) to make sure that person receives proper public health direction for testing and self-isolation.

The automated system is the quickest, most efficient way to get Manitobans the information they need to take the necessary precautions to slow the spread of the virus.

We ask all Manitobans for their patience and cooperation as we roll out this system that we anticipate will improve our efforts to help protect our citizens from the coronavirus. 


Text Messages Introduced to Complement Monitoring and Follow-up

We have introduced text messages to alert Manitobans that their test results are available on the Manitoba COVID-19 Online Result Display. Text messages will also now be used to support case and contact monitoring on a daily basis, in addition to phone calls from contact tracers and automated phone messages. Text messages for monitoring will be used in combination with support from members of the Manitoba government’s contact tracing team throughout their isolation period and will provide recipients with an opportunity to confirm their isolation status, report changes in their symptoms and request direct contact from a contact tracer. Text messages are an additional service to augment the contact tracing team’s overall capacity and provide another option for cases and contacts to interact with public health officials. Similar to a phone call, it’s important that the public respond to these text messages as soon as possible to improve the speed and accuracy of our efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect all Manitobans.


Beware of Scams

Our interest is only in your health and the well-being of Manitobans. Manitoba public health officials will never ask for personal information, such as banking information, social insurance numbers, credit cards, passport numbers, or other non-health related identification data.

Any calls you may receive that ask for money or personal information unrelated to your health are scams. Hang up and report the calls to your local police department.


Public Health Officials Respect Your Privacy

As with all contact from public health officials and their representatives, including automated phone calls, your personal health information will be protected. Calls will involve only information about your experience with COVID-19.


Frequently Asked Questions About Automated Calls in Case and Contact Monitoring


In the coming days, automated calling will be used to assist with open case and contact monitoring.

In the first phase, the calls will be used to determine if active cases can now be marked recovered. In the second phase, the system will be used to contact cases and their related contacts. This will allow public health officials to be more responsive and reach people sooner.

Individuals will continue to receive personal calls from provincial public health officials. However, the automated calls will make the monitoring process more efficient and effective.

If you tested positive for COVID-19, or were in close contact with someone who tested positive and were asked to self-isolate, you may get a follow-up automated phone call as part of your monitoring and investigation cycle of care.

You will be asked important information about testing, self-isolation and other public health guidelines in a question-and-answer format, with answers provided via keypad number options.


With increased levels of COVID-19 testing and close contacts, Manitoba Public Health may contact you  in the future with auto-dialer calls or SMS text messaging in order to provide you with automatic notices related to your public health file.  This will allow Manitoba Public Health to provide you with important information on an expedited basis.  You will still be able to speak with a public health nurse or contact tracer if you wish to do so.


Communication from Manitoba Public Health by SMS text messages or an auto-dialer call, may result in notices being displayed on your phone’s screen (depending on your text preview settings).   You may wish to consider adjusting your phone settings to meet your display preferences.  Each individual case will receive a dedicated call or text.  This could mean that multiple calls or texts are delivered to a single number provided for a family unit.   We recommend that you provide a personal mobile phone number to receive the text messages or calls.


If you tested positive for COVID-19, or were in close contact with someone who tested positive and were asked to self-isolate, you may get a follow-up automated phone call as part of your monitoring and investigation cycle of care.

Note: Until you are symptom-free and your case is closed, you may receive calls by someone from public health officials and by the automated call system.


The automated call will display “1-855-949-5119”.


The call may ask you about your symptoms and testing status. It will not ask for information such as your health card number, banking information, social insurance numbers, credit card numbers, passport numbers, or other non-health related data.


Several attempts will be made to connect with you. If this happens and you tested positive for COVID-19, public health officials will attempt to contact you. If you need to speak to someone immediately, call Health Links - Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll free 1-888-315-9257.


Several attempts will be made to connect with you. If this happens and you tested positive for COVID-19, public health officials will attempt to contact you. If you need to speak to someone immediately, call Health Links - Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll free 1-888-315-9257.


The automated call will be delivered to the phone number provided to public health. It is very important that the person being called is the person who takes the call (e.g., not someone else) to make sure that person receives proper public health direction for follow-up testing and self-isolation information.

Please contact Health Links - Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll free 1-888-315-9257 to if you or the person the call was intended for have further questions.


Please follow the prompts during the call to indicate that the phone number is incorrect. If you have followed the prompts correctly, you do not need to take further action.


Automated phone calls will be made between 9:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., seven days a week.


Parents and guardians will receive automated calls for dependents (aged 15 years and younger). Each individual follow-up automated call will be delivered by a dedicated call. This means that multiple calls may be delivered to a single number provided for one family unit.


Yes. To receive an automated call, you must remove any anonymous call-blocking settings from your phone to allow the automated call to come through.


No. Contact Health Links - Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll free 1-888-315-9257 for assistance.


The Shared Health COVID-19 Online Results Display provides Manitobans with secure access to their COVID-19 test result. Individuals with a valid Manitoba Health Registration Card are able to securely access their COVID-19 test results online from their computer or mobile device.

You may also contact Health Links - Info Santé at 204-788-8200 or toll free 1-888-315-9257.