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Omicron is Dominant in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Manitoba reported 825 new COVID-19 cases and five new deaths related to the novel coronavirus.

The province's online dashboard on Tuesday said 164 people are hospitalized with COVID-19, of which 27 are in intensive care.

The COVID-19 numbers went up from 675 on Monday, but officials have warned the figures may be misleading because of delays in obtaining test results and a change in testing protocols.

Health and Seniors Care Minister Audrey Gordon said Monday that most symptomatic and fully vaccinated people who go to testing sites will receive a rapid test to take at home, and will only be asked to return for a PCR if the result is positive.

Manitoba has also tightened public health restrictions, particularly on large gatherings, to curb the spread of COVID-19 cases spurred by the highly contagious Omicron variant.

Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba's chief public health officer, said Monday that Omicron is now the prominent COVID-19 strain in almost all of the province's health regions.


Saskatchewan health officials say COVID-19 hospitalization rates are falling in the province and there are no cases of the Omicron variant that require treatment in a hospital.

They say in a news release Tuesday that there are 80 people in hospital due to COVID-19, and 16 in intensive care.

They say 129 people were hospitalized in Saskatchewan on Nov. 28, with 36 in intensive care; and five in Ontario hospitals.

They credit the province's high vaccination rate for the decrease in hospitalization caseloads.

While there are no cases of Omicron that require hospitalization, officials warn people that the variant is present in the community and ask that everyone take all steps possible to protect themselves.

They say the province reported 1,195 new cases of COVID-19 between Dec. 22 and 28, and four deaths.

(The Canadian Press)

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