COVID-19 Update — April 28, 2021
In today’s update you will find:
- The COVID Situation in MB
- Vaccine updates
- How you can help with Vaccine Confidence
- Doctors needed at Super Sites
- 113th AGM registration and information
Since our last update on Monday, most COVID surveillance indicators have held steady or increased::
- Daily cases still high: Another 403 new cases of COVID-19 have been identified, including 189 today. This brings the total case count in Manitoba to 38,211.
- Test positivity steady: The five-day test positivity rate is 7.5%, similar to 7.6% on Monday. It is 8.4% in Winnipeg, up from 8.2%.
- Active cases up: There are 2,206 active COVID-19 cases province-wide, up from our last report of 2,093. While about 58% of active cases are in Winnipeg, active cases have increased since the beginning in April the most in Interlake-Eastern region (by 3.3 times), Prairie Mountain region (by 4.3 times) and in Winnipeg (by 2.6 times).
- Hospitalization data is incomplete today, but appears to be steady from Monday.
- Three new deaths related to COVID-19 were identified, all reported today. The total number of deaths is 971.
The total number of cases involving variants of concern has grown to 1,688, up 487 from Friday. The B.1.1.7 variant continues to be the dominant variant of concern. The number of B.1.351 (South Africa origin) cases remains at 20 and the number of P.1 (Brazil origin) cases increased to 9. Six of the COVID deaths in Manitoba involved a variant of concern.
New restrictions, announced Monday, came into effect early this morning. This includes prohibiting indoor and outdoor visitors to private residences and reducing capacity in retail and other settings. You can see our summary of the new restrictions here.
The vaccine rollout continues in Manitoba.
- Access was expanded today to include all adults in more“hot spot” communities. This includes more of downtown and north Winnipeg and downtown Brandon. All of northern Manitoba remains eligible. You can view a map here.
- Eligibility remains unchanged for government-run super sites and pop up clinics at age 50+ (or 30+ for First Nations).
- In medical clinics and pharmacies using AstraZeneca, eligibility remains at age 40 and over.
- 34.7% of Manitoba adults (or 26.9% of all Manitobans) have received at least one dose, up from 32.9%.
- More government-run mass immunization super sites will open soon. This includes Winnipeg (Leila Soccer Complex opening next week), Steinbach (opening May 18) and Dauphin (opening May 10).
Interpreter services have been added to the vaccine appointment scheduling service in over 100 languages. At the time of booking a request can be made to have on-site interpretation available by phone, or video for American Sign Language.
AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson
Manitoba will get a very small shipment of AstraZeneca vaccine (only 150 – 200 doses) and then has no confirmed shipment dates. Expected shipments were disrupted by the export ban in the UK.
The first shipment of Johnson & Johnson is expected soon, but a date is still not confirmed. Doctors Manitoba continues to work with provincial vaccine task force officials to press for a better and more equitable ordering and distribution system.
Eligibility for AstraZeneca remains at age 40 and up, though there are few doses left in Manitoba.
Some had hoped to see eligibility expand to 30+ following the National Advisory Committee on Immunization’s updated recommendations. Dr. Reimer pointed out that NACI recommended age 30 and over when there is more virus circulating, as this increases the benefits of vaccination compared to the risks.
Manitoba has referenced the following charts from the University of Cambridge in the UK to illustrate the benefits from immunization (avoiding ICU admissions) vs. the risks from AstraZeneca (blood clot) by age group. This chart assumes a low level of virus circulating (about 2 new daily cases per 10,000 people, or about 260 in Manitoba). You can review the original article to see how the benefits grow as the risk of exposure increases.
A woman in Quebec has died of a blood clot after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine, or vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopenia (VITT). The woman, age 54, is Canada’s first known death. Quebec has administered over 400,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine so far. Officials and medical experts reinforced that the benefits far outweigh the risks, and the family has encouraged the public to monitor for symptoms and seek care without delay. VITT is a treatable condition.
Please Help Us with Vaccine Confidence!
We are looking for physicians willing to share their story about COVID-19 vaccination, and we hope you can help!
Getting the vaccine is a choice, and when doctors lead the way we help Manitobans make an informed decision. You address vaccine hesitancy everyday, and now we need your help to increase public vaccine confidence.
Here’s how you can help:
- We’re looking for vaccine stories from physicians, residents and medical students. Why did you get the shot? What do you hear from patients and what do you tell them? Stories can be more powerful than stats, and when they come from a trusted source like a physician, they go a long way to increasing confidence.
- We’re also looking for physicians to participate in short videos, taking a line or two from a script to help demonstrate why over 95% of doctor have already been vaccinated in Manitoba.
If you received AstraZeneca or Moderna, or plan to receive Johnson & Johnson, we especially need to hear from you. Physicians who received Pfizer are needed too.
We know we need to reduce vaccine hesitancy for Manitoba to reach herd immunity, and you can help!
Interested? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and please include:
- Your name and age
- Your primary work location
- Which type of COVID-19 vaccine your received
- If you speak any languages fluently other than English.
We will help you draft your story, which could appear on ManitobaVaccine.ca. With over 400,000 visits, our public vaccine resource site ManitobaVaccine.ca has proven that Manitobans trust doctors and want to hear more from them. Some stories may also appear on the government’s ProtectMB site.
Physicians Needed at Super Site
Doctors Manitoba is assisting the government with providing physician coverage for the Winnipeg vaccine super sites. Physicians are needed to assist with the informed consent process, helping individuals who have more questions or need clinical guidance to complete the informed consent process because of allergies or complex medical conditions.
Physicians are needed now until at least early September at both the RBC Convention Centre and the Leila Soccer Complex locations in Winnipeg.
The super site clinics operate seven days per week from 830am to 830pm, and there are 12, 8.25 and 4 hour shifts available. Regular schedules and casual opportunities are available. Paid training is provided, and special remuneration has been negotiated for physicians filling the informed consent role at the super sites.
Learn more about the opportunity and apply online through Doctors Manitoba.
The opportunity was shared with physicians during a vaccine webinar on Monday night, and we already have over 80 signed up to help.
Physicians play a key role in building trust and vaccine confidence with Manitobans. While we are supporting the government-run mass immunization clinics, we also continue to press for more vaccine doses for doctors’ offices.
AGM Next Week and Doctors Manitoba Awards
You can now register for the Doctors Manitoba AGM!
Because the public health restrictions don’t allow in-person events, our annual awards gala has been postponed this year. However, this means our usual annual business meeting has been transformed into a major event for physicians!
At our AGM this year, you will:
- Hear from Dr. Tait Shanafelt, a global thought-leader on physician wellness who leads WellMD at Stanford University
- Be the first to learn who has won a 2021 Doctors Manitoba award. We will still plan an awards gala this fall to celebrate, but you won’t want to miss the unveiling of this very impressive group of honourees!
- Receive an update from our Board on how Doctors Manitoba has been growing to respond to your priorities, and see our new President take office.
You can learn more about our keynote speaker and the AGM online. We will update this page with traditional AGM materials, including the agenda and other documents.