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Health officials identify locations of two Westman COVID-19 cases

The Brandon Sun - 8/1/2020

Manitoba public health officials confirmed Friday that exposure to COVID-19 may have occurred at Asian Spices of Brandon from a case that was identified Thursday.

When contacted Thursday by The Brandon Sun, a spokesperson for the province would not confirm that any cases occurred at the store on 10th Street.

"Public Health is not able to identify any individuals, as that could result in the release of personal health information," the spokesperson wrote in an email to the Sun Thursday. "It is a long-standing practice that public health does not identify individuals for this reason. In areas with small populations and a small number of cases, there is a greater opportunity for the identification of an individual who tested positive for COVID-19.

"If a public health risks is assessed and it is deemed necessary to protect the health of others, information is released."

The front door of the store was locked Thursday when the Sun stopped by; however, there were no signs indicating why.

In a news release Friday, health officials said people who were in the Brandon spice store July 22 and July 23 may have been exposed to COVID-19.

Public health officials also confirmed Friday that potential exposure to the virus may have occurred at Blazers Mini Mart in Minnedosa on July 25.

The Minnedosa case is one of six health officials identified Friday.

The Sun reported on Friday that the store on Main Street was closed due to potential exposure to COVID-19.

A post Thursday on the What's Happening, Minnedosa!!! Facebook group site said one of the owners of Blazers Mini Mart tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday and had worked the morning shift on July 25.

Health officials said Friday two of the new cases occurred in the Prairie Mountain Health region.

Six people are currently in hospital being treated for the virus, five of them in intensive care.

There 70 active cases and 337 individuals have recovered from COVID-19.

An additional 1,073 laboratory tests were completed on Thursday, bringing the total number of tests completed since early February to 88,621.