Minnesota health officials ask young adults to get tested for COVID-19

A graph provided by the Minnesota Department of Health shows the distribution of COVID-19 cases among age groups statewide. (Minnesota Department of Health)

As cases for the coronavirus surge in Minnesota, state health officials are asking all young adults to get tested for COVID-19, even if they don't have symptoms.

"We have to stop pandemic in Minnesota," said Dan Huff, assistant health commissioner. "We are at alarming case numbers.  And if you are 18 to 35 because you are young and healthy, you may not show symptoms and it’s really important you get tested.”

According to state data, the 20 to 24 age group has the most cases since the pandemic began, but only has one death. In contrast, elderly age groups have fewer cases, but a higher amount of deaths.

Thursday, the state reported a single-day record of 7,228 new cases, breaking the record set just several days ago. There were also 39 deaths reported, the second-highest single-day total after 56 deaths were reported the day prior.

In an effort to better track the virus' spread, the state has ramped up testing. The mail-order at-home COVID-19 test is now available statewide. Officials are also planning to open an additional 11 long-term testing sites throughout the state.

"You may not know you are infected, but you can still spread it to other people," said Huff. "So we’re asking that if you are 18 to 35, follow-up with one of our testing sites and get tested."