Before the end of the week, big changes will be coming to Winnipeg's COVID-19 reporting.

Manitoba's Health Minister Cameron Friesen says that before the end of the week, Winnipeg will be split into its own districts.

Previously, the Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Brent Roussin said the province had no plans to split the city into districts, stating that many Winnipeggers worked and lived in different parts of the city. Winnipeg Health Region was the only health region in Manitoba that did not have separate districts. 

Before the end of the week, Winnipeg will have 12 distinct districts to report COVID-19 cases.

"It is not to guide action, it is to provide information," Roussin says.

Roussin says the province will provide data for Winnipeg similar to the other districts, including total numbers, active cases, and deaths. 

Most cases being reported come from close contact, with 16 non-epi-linked cases in Winnipeg for the past week, noting the overall number of close contacts for new cases is increasing.

Roussin says that cases will be reported in correspondence to home addresses. He adds that many Winnipeggers live and work in different districts and the separation of Winnipeg is in direct response to the public's call for more information. 

The doctor is cautioning Winnipegers to avoid stigmatizing neighbourhoods with case numbers.