WINNIPEG — The province is changing how it identifies and manages COVID-19 cases and risk exposure in Manitoba schools.
Education and health officials say they will consider vaccination status and consistent medical or non-medical mask use when assessing risk and determining isolation requirements for close contacts.
“To align with public health measures, self-isolation requirements for close contacts are also reduced to 10 days from 14 days and testing is recommended at day seven,” the province said in a release. “Where there is higher community transmission or outbreaks, the isolation requirements may change to reflect increased risk.”
The definition of a school case is also changing to align with established incubation and communicability periods for COVID-19. Moving forward, a case in school is considered to be a staff, student or volunteer affiliated with a kindergarten to Grade 12 school in Manitoba, who was present in the school:
• During the 14 days prior to symptom onset, or positive test date if asymptomatic
• Within 10 days after illness onset, or positive test date if asymptomatic
The definition of a school outbreak is also changing, meaning it will now include at least three school-associated cases identified within 14 days of each other in students, teachers or staff within a specified cohort. The cases will have to be assessed as potentially acquired in school, and linked to a known case in the school setting or a school-sanctioned extracurricular activity.
Further information on the changes is available on the province’s website.
— Dr. Brent Roussin (@roussin_brent) September 21, 2021