The Manitoba government is making minor changes to the current public health orders and will remain at the ‘critical’ (red) level on the #RestartMB Pandemic Response System as of March 26/2021.
Only a limited number of the options proposed late last week will be implemented in the next round of when the current COVID-19 prevention orders expire on March 25/2021.
The following changes to public health orders go into effect on Friday, March 26 at 12:01 a.m. and will expire on April 15/2021:
- increasing gathering limits at weddings and funerals to 25 from 10 people;
- increasing gathering limits at outdoor public places to 25 from 10 people;
- maintaining the capacity limits for retail stores at 50 per cent, but expanding the in-store limits to a 500-person capacity, whichever is lower, with other public health measures still in effect; and
- relaxing rules for drive-in events to allow people to leave their vehicles while still observing public health measures.
Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s Chief Provincial Public Health Officer, noted that changes to indoor or outdoor gathering sizes at personal residences or in restaurants will not be introduced, as prolonged contact has a higher risk of transmitting the virus.
“We are carefully monitoring our hospitalization data and case numbers of cases linked to variants of concern to ensure that as we gradually reopen, we continue to have capacity in the system,” said Roussin. “That said, we are going to see more cases and more exposures as we slowly reopen. COVID-19 will be here to stay for awhile, and we need to work together to manage its effects and protect our most vulnerable. We can continue to do this by following the fundamentals including mask wearing, frequent handwashing, staying home when sick and getting vaccinated when eligible.”
Additional changes may be considered after spring break, Passover and Easter if data supports making further reopening efforts.