Provincial Respiratory Surveillance Report

COVID-19 and Seasonal Influenza

This report provides a current epidemiological update on the intensity and severity of COVID-19 in Manitoba. Surveillance and administrative data include laboratory, public health case and contact tracing investigations, hospitalization and mortality data. Data are presented at the provincial and regional level; and include a focussed review on the disproportional impact of COVID-19 on various populations in the province.

Epidemiology and Surveillance also continues to monitor the activity of seasonal influenza in Manitoba during this pandemic. During the 2020–2021 influenza season, routine reporting of seasonal influenza is included in this weekly report.

In this weekly respiratory surveillance report, we provide regular updates about the current activity of COVID-19 and seasonal influenza in Manitoba with overall objectives:

Data are reported with a one-week delay for increased data accuracy, completeness and reliability. More analyses continue to be conducted and will be added to this report as available. It is published online at approximately 10:00am every Monday.

Week 15 (April 11 – April 17)

About epidemiological week

Data extracted up to 4:00 am on April 23, 2021
Next reporting date: May 3, 2021

COVID-19: Increased Activity

In Week 15, there were 938 laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases reported in Manitoba, an increase from 797 in the previous week. The volume of lab tests increased to on average 2,576 people tested for COVID-19 per day compared to 2,102 in the previous week, and the positivity rate of lab tests was 5.5%, similar to 5.7% in the previous week.

In an examination of the 938 cases reported this week, majority (59%) were reported from the Winnipeg Regional Health and 24% were reported from the Northern Health Region. The remaining cases were reported from Prairie Mountain Health Authority (6%), Southern Health - Santé Sud Regional Health Authority (6%) and Interlake-Eastern Regional Health Authority (5%).

This week, 455 cases of cariants of concern (VOC) have been reported, an increase from 196 in the previous week. Additionally, VOC cases accounted for close to 50% of new cases this week.

Overall, older adults and those with underlying illnesses are at higher risk for severe outcomes as a result of COVID-19 infection.

As of April 17, a total of 336,138 doses of COVID19 vaccines have been administered and 24.8% of residents aged 18 years and older in Manitoba have been immunized with at least one dose.


About cases

  • New cases: 938
  • Total cases: 36,159
  • Total cases of VOCs: 1,016
  • Recovered cases: 34,331
More Analyses


About testing

This week

  • Average daily specimens: 2,576
  • Weekly positivity rate: 5.5%


  • Tested people: 411,200
  • Population tested: 30.1%
  • Specimens tested: 622,380
  • Positivity rate: 6.2%
More Analyses


About severity

Severe outcomes associated with COVID-19:

  • Hospitalizations: 2,540
    • ICU admissions: 533
  • Deaths: 963
More Analyses


About outbreaks

COVID-19 outbreaks: 216

  • Outbreaks in long-term care facilities: 112
  • Outbreaks in schools: 3
More Analyses


About exposure

Source of infection in cases (% of total)

  • Travel: 1.4%
  • Close contact to cases: 53.0%
  • Unknown: 23.1%
  • Pending: 22.5%

Close contacts

  • Top contact type: Household exposure
More Analyses

Risk Factors

About risk factors

  • Pregnant cases: 396
  • Health care workers**: 2,058
  • Deceased Health care workers: 2
  • Recovered health care workers: 2,047
More Analyses


About symptoms

Symptomatic cases: 71.4%

Top symptoms (% of reports)

  • Cough: 43.9%
  • Headache: 37.4%
  • Fever: 29.9%
  • Muscle pain (myalgia): 27.9%
  • Sore Throat: 26.2%
More Analyses

Seasonal Influenza: Low Activity

A large number of respiratory specimens continued to be tested for seasonal influenza. There were no laboratory-confirmed influenza cases reported in Manitoba in Week 15.

As of April 17, 31.8% of residents in Manitoba have been immunized with seasonal influenza vaccines.

Influenza Cases

About cases

New cases this week

  • Influenza A: 0
  • Influenza B: 0

Total cases from September 1, 2020

  • Influenza A: 2
  • Influenza B: 1

Syndromic Indicators: Low Activity

The respiratory activity levels in the community, primary care and emergency rooms continued to be low for this time of a year. The number of respiratory outbreaks reported that were not due to COVID-19 remains low.


About FluWatchers

Participants reporting: 604

Reporting fever and cough: 0.2%

Check Trend

Physician Visits

About sentinal physicians

Influenza Like Illness (ILI) Visits to sentinel physicians: 0.4%

Check Trend


About Antiviral

Units of antiviral dispensed from pharmacies: 1

ED Visits

About emergency room visits

Average daily respiratory visits to emergency department (ED): 88

Check Trend

Important Notes

  1. Data about COVID-19 cases and contacts aswell as influenza cases are extracted from PHIMS.
  2. Numbers are subject to change. Missed events in the current report due to reporting delays will be included in later reports when data become available.
  3. *ICU admissions were also included in hospitalizations.
  4. **Health care workers include personnels in hospitals, long-term care settings, community health clinics and services (including agency staff), and diagnostic/laboratory services.


Figure 1. Cases of COVID-19 by Week of Public Health Report Date, Manitoba, June 2020 – Present

Note. Deaths due to COVID-19 were aligned by week of death date.

Figure 2. COVID-19 Cases of Variants of Concern (VOC) by Type and Percentage of VOC Cases in All Cases by Week of Public Health Report Date, Manitoba, June 2020 – Present


Figure 3. Sex and Age Distribution of COVID-19 Cases, March 2020 – Present


Figure 4. Cases of COVID-19 by Health Region and Public Health Report Date, Manitoba, June 2020 – Present


Table 1. Cases of COVID-19 by Health Region, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Health Region Cases Percentage
Winnipeg RHA 19682 54.4%
Southern Health-Santé Sud 5032 13.9%
Interlake-Eastern RHA 2543 7.0%
Prairie Mountain Health 2331 6.4%
Northern Health Region 6571 18.2%



Figure 5. Average Daily Testing Volume and Positivity (%) for COVID-19 by Week of Specimen Receiving Date, Manitoba, June 2020 – Present


Table 2. Cumulative National Testing Volume and Positivity (%) for COVID-19 by Province/Territory, Canada, March 2020 – Present

Province Confirmed Cases Tests Completed Test Rate in Population (Estimated %) Positivity Rate (Estimated %)
Alberta 167,793 3,896,301 89.6% 4.3%
British Columbia 117,080 2,338,045 46.3% 5.0%
Manitoba 35,809 623,337 45.7% 5.7%
New Brunswick 1,767 280,991 36.3% 0.6%
Newfoundland and Labrador 1,039 231,971 44.4% 0.4%
Northwest Territories 43 16,863 37.5% 0.3%
Nova Scotia 1,792 459,894 47.6% 0.4%
Nunavut 408 10,090 26.1% 4.0%
Ontario 408,383 13,207,091 91.2% 3.1%
Prince Edward Island 167 133,471 85.7% 0.1%
Quebec 334,071 7,730,114 91.5% 4.3%
Saskatchewan 37,624 716,328 61.2% 5.3%
Yukon 76 8,729 21.5% 0.9%
Canada 1,106,065 29,653,301 79.3% 3.7%

Note. National testing data are collected daily from the national Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Outbreak update webpage.



Figure 6. Severe Outcomes of COVID-19 by Week of Public Health Report Date, Manitoba, June 2020 – Present

Note. ICU admissions are not included in the hospital admissions.

Figure 7. Age Distribution of Severe COVID-19 Cases Compared to All Cases, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Figure 8. Percentage of COVID-19 Cases With Underlying Illnesses, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Note. Musculoskeletal illnesses include: osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, juvenile idiopathic arthritis, gout and crystal Arthropathies; COPD-chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; CVD-cardiovascular disease; Other CVDs include: ischemic heart disease, heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, and stroke; Other chronic conditions include: parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, alzheimer’s disease and epilepsy. About definitions of chronic conditions


Risk Factors

Table 3. Source of Infection in Health Care Workers with Non-missing Information, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Source of Infection Cases Percentage
Close contact of known case 1228 59.7%
Pending 186 9%
Travel 20 1%
Unknown 624 30.3%
All Cases 2058

Table 4. Roles of Health Care Workers with Non-missing Information, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Role Cases Percentage
Allied Health, Health Professionals, and Support Staff 1203 58.5%
Nurse/Licensed Practical Nurse 579 28.1%
Not identified 156 7.6%
Physician/Physician in training 77 3.7%
First Responder 43 2.1%
All Cases 2058



Figure 9. Weekly Respiratory and COVID-19 Outbreaks, Manitoba, 2018 – 2021



Table 5. COVID-19 Contact Summary in All Cases, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Regional Health Authority Cases Median Contacts Minimum Contacts Maximum Contacts
Winnipeg Health 19682 3 0 249
Northern Health 6571 0 0 65
Southern Health - Sante Sud 5032 2 0 66
Interlake-Eastern Health 2543 1 0 58
Prairie Mountain Health 2331 3 0 134

Table 6. COVID-19 Contact Summary in New Cases Reported in Week 15, Manitoba, 2021

Regional Health Authority Cases Median Contacts Minimum Contacts Maximum Contacts
Winnipeg Health 555 4 0 78
Northern Health 222 0 0 65
Prairie Mountain Health 60 3 0 26
Southern Health - Sante Sud 55 2 0 13
Interlake-Eastern Health 46 3 0 36



Figure 10. Percentage of Symptoms Reported by COVID-19 Cases, Manitoba, March 2020 – Present

Note: Other symptoms include those less common symptoms such as sweating, runny eyes, itchy throat, etc.



Figure 11. Weekly FluWatchers Participants and Percentage Reporting Fever and Cough, Manitoba, 2020 – 2021


Physician Visits

Figure 12. Weekly Percentage of ILI Related Visits to Sentinel Physicians, Manitoba, 2021


ED Visits

Figure 13. Weekly Respiratory Visits to Emergency Department, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, Manitoba, 2018 – 2021


Epidemiology and Surveillance

Other Epidemiology and Surveillance reports