Community Update April 28
New screening criteria - anyone with symptoms can be tested

Public health officials are expanding COVID-19 testing criteria to let more Manitobans take advantage of testing. If you have cold or flu like symptoms - you can come for testing.

Can range from mild to severe and include cough, fever, difficulty breathing, sore throat, runny nose, malaise, headache, muscle aches, hoarse voice, fatigue, loss of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea for more than 24 hours, poor feeding (infant).

As of today, if you have symptoms please visit one of the community testing sites.
Call before you go
 Call 1-855-347-8500 and press #1 for testing site hours of operation. Testing site hours are subject to change.
You will be called with your test results.
You will receive a call with the results of your test. Staff at the community testing site do not receive the results of your test and they won't be able to assist in securing that information for you. It will take three or more days to receive test results. Your patience is appreciated.
Testing site locations
IERHA testing sites
As long as you are experiencing cough or cold like symptoms, you are welcome to visit any of three testing sites to be screened.

35 Railway Avenue Wellness Centre Map here
10 am 3 pm, Monday to Friday *
Please remain in your car until staff on-site direct otherwise.

33 Vincent Street Ecole Powerview School
9 am 4 pm , Monday to Friday *
Please remain in your car until staff on-site direct otherwise.

9 am 4 pm, every day *
Please remain in your car - this is a drive through testing site.

*Call & confirm hours in advance: 1-855-347-8500; press #1
What a COVID-19 test involves
A health care provider needs to swab the inside of your nose and will typically swab both nostrils.

Not sure if you're a candidate for testing?
Use the online tool or call
1-877-308-9038 for over the phone screening. Go through the questions to determine if you meet the criteria. You will NOT be tested if you do not meet the criteria.
Please check the Manitoba Health website for the most current criteria .
A note of thanks
From CEO Ron Van Denakker

They say that numbers don't lie. If that's the case, the truth in the recent low numbers of positive COVID-19 cases tells us that Manitobans are doing an excellent job of taking care of and protecting each other.
Staying at home, physical distancing and regularly washing our hands are the best ways for us to prevent the virus from taking its toll on our residents as we've seen in other jurisdictions. But now that we see our efforts are making a difference, we can't stop. COVID-19 is still circulating in our communities. Dr. Roussin, Manitoba's chief provincial public health officer, is urging us all to keep at it. The end of today's restrictions is in sight but to relax our vigilance now will upend all of the good work we've done to date.
So on behalf of the health care providers in Interlake-Eastern RHA who are at the ready to respond to any cases of COVID-19 that occur in our region, thank you for all that you're doing for us and the other residents of the region. Thank you for the many kindnesses showered upon us with donations of food and other comforts, for the drive by acknowledgements and donations of supplies that are needed by our frontline staff. And thank you for the number one gift you can give to us - your continued efforts to work with us by adhering to the restrictions in place. We are all in this together!
Mapping the spread
The Province of Manitoba website is now providing graphic representations of Manitoba's COVID-19 data. Below shows how successful we have all been in flattening the curve (red line) of our cumulative cases by staying home and physical distancing. Click to see current data .
Click on the map below to see real time spread globally.
Don't put your health on hold - call your care provider
A note from Dr. Myron Thiessen, Vice President of Medical Services and Chief Medical Officer, Interlake-Eastern RHA
I have been hearing of increasing concerns that Manitobans are not accessing the medical care they need. I understand people may feel they are a bother to physicians who are already busy or they may think a clinic or hospital is not safe because the COVID virus could be caught there. Or, there may be other reasons. In these uncertain times, questions like this do arise and need answers.
However, not seeing a care provider when you otherwise might, is not safe for your health and could lead to worse health outcomes. Physicians are concerned about the well-being of the public and their patients.
Physicians continue to offer primary care as they have in the past. Access to care might look differently now than it has in the past but it is as available as it was before COVID-19. With virtual care now being used by physicians, in many ways it is easier to access care than before.  Physicians are prepared to care for your needs and will also see you in person as necessary. When you are advised to see your care provider in person, your visit to the primary care centre is entirely safe. Distancing measures are in place in clinics and items you may come in contact with such as chairs and examining equipment are being meticulously cleaned.
Hospitals are also safe. The same measures of cleaning and distancing are in place there as well. If you have a condition for which care is needed, access that care immediately. Don’t ignore the need to take care of your health. For those who have chronic conditions, like diabetes or high blood pressure, your ongoing care is very important. Not maintaining regular contact with your care provider can lead to a deterioration of your health and cause emergency conditions to arise, or perhaps a detriment to your wellbeing in the long run. Do not put off managing your health even though we are experiencing a pandemic. Call your primary care provider as you normally would. If you have an issue for which you would have gone to a same day or walk-in clinic, call your family physician or primary care provider. They are ready to take care of you now just as they have been in the past.   Read more .
Donations needed and welcomed
Medical donations
Generosity appreciated!
Above - Dr. Kerr Graham and Patrice Lee, clinical team manager, at Stonewall and District Health Centre, with N95 masks, a donation from Mr. Frank Chen in Alonsa.

The Manitoba government is renewing its request for medical gloves and masks to support the province’s response to COVID-19. Specifically, Manitoba is urgently seeking the following items:
•   nitrile gloves,
•   vinyl gloves,
•   N95 masks, and
•   testing swabs.
Manitoba manufacturers or businesses able to provide supplies and those who are prepared to retool and rapidly scale up production lines to develop products made in Manitoba to help in the fight against COVID-19 are asked to visit to register their interest.
Shared Health has also issued a call to businesses that are able to donate personal protective equipment. If your business has supplies that have been identified as needed, are in original packaging, clean and in usable condition please click here. There is a drop-off location in Selkirk.
Homemade cloth items

Interlake Eastern RHA is accepting donations of n0n-medical cloth items.
If you are interested in making a donation and would like more information, please contact Pamela McCallum, executive director of Interlake Eastern Health Foundation, (204) 485-5139 ,
Pam can advise on drop off locations and answer any questions.
Policy for donated food and beverages

Community members have been incredibly generous with donations of food items to staff and we are very grateful.
To prevent the spread of infection in our facilities, we are now adhering to a provincial policy. If you are considering a donation of food to one of our sites, please read this information i n advance about how food must be packaged.
Please contact Pamela McCallum, executive director of Interlake-Eastern Health Foundation, at 204- 485-5139 or to advise in advance of any donations you will be bringing in. Pam can identify the best place for you to drop-off your donation and she can answer any questions you may have.
Wearing gloves and masks in public
Hand hygiene using an alcohol based hand rub is your best protection while out in the community. Using hand sanitizer often is safer than wearing gloves. Glove use increases contamination between surfaces and gives the wearer a false sense of security. Hand contamination can occur during the removal of gloves if you are not trained in the correct technique. Gloves should not be a replacement for performing hand hygiene. 
Using personal protective equipment (PPE) requires training and practice. Most contamination occurs during the improper use and/or removal of PPE. If you choose to use a mask, you must wash your hands immediately before putting it on and as soon as you take it off (in addition to practicing good hand hygiene while wearing it). It should not be touched or adjusted while out. Put it in the wash upon your return home followed by hand hygiene. Wearing a non-medical mask has shown evidence that it can protect others around you. It's very much like when you use your arm to cover a cough or a sneeze. It prevents you from spreading droplets into the air. 

Your risk of exposure to COVID-19 can be avoided in one easy step - stay home!
Navigating COVID-19
Are you a former health care worker interested in helping out to replace staff dedicated to COVID 19? Please contact us at
Resources For You
Supporting Your Family and Kids
Hey Sigmund  is a website with that contains the latest research and news in psychology. It features excellent resources to support parents and guardians with children and teens who are experiencing feelings of anxiety. Please click here to visit the site .
Mental Health Virtual Therapy Program - Now Available
Help when you need it. Where you need it.
Caring for your mental health is important during the COVID-19 pandemic. AbilitiCBT is a new digital therapy program from  Morneau Shepell , available to all residents of Manitoba age 16 or older experiencing mild to moderate symptoms of anxiety due to the pandemic.

You do not need to be referred by a doctor to use AbilitiCBT. You will be able to connect to a professional therapist trained to help you deal with:
  • pandemic challenges
  • the state of uncertainty
  • physical isolation
  • care for family and community members
  • information overload
  • stress management

Your ideas and feedback are welcome. Please email us a t