Three COVID-19 deaths announced in Manitoba Wednesday, two linked to Alpha variant

Manitoba health officials announced three new COVID-19 deaths on Wednesday, all of which are connected to variants of concern.

Two of the deaths are linked to the Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant, a woman in her 50s from the Interlake-Eastern Health Region, and a woman in her 70s from the Northern Health Region.

The third death was a man in his 80s from the Southern Health Region connected to an unspecified variant.

Manitoba's death toll now sits at 1,175.

The province also added 26 new cases, bringing the COVID-19 total to 57,502.

The Interlake-Eastern region had 15 new cases, followed by six cases in Winnipeg, three cases in the Southern Health Region, two cases in the Prairie Mountain Health Region, and no cases in the Northern Health Region.

Manitoba's five-day test positivity rate is 2.5 per cent and Winnipeg's test positivity rate is 1.3 per cent.

There are 497 active cases and 55,830 people have recovered. Manitoba has 104 people in hospital. Of those, 35 have active COVID-19.

Thirty patients are in ICU, with 13 patients having active COVID-19.

On Tuesday, 1,487 lab tests were performed, bringing the total to 869,632 since February 2020.

With the three new deaths, there have been 179 linked to variants of concern.

Manitoba has had 16,592 variant cases and of those cases, 304 are active.

The most common variant strain has been the Alpha variant with 7,113, there have been 8,525 unspecified variant cases and there have been 624 Delta variant cases.