Minnesota sets new single-day record for COVID-19 cases for 3rd straight day

Minnesota set a new single-day record for COVID-19 cases for the third straight day this week Thursday. 

The Minnesota Department of Health reported 3,956 new COVID-19 cases, a new daily high and the fifth time in the past seven days the state has seen more than 3,000 cases in a single day. 

Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said Wednesday Minnesota will likely see 4,000 cases per day in the near future. 

The 3,956 newly reported cases were out of 34,305 completed tests—a positivity rate of 11.5%. As of Wednesday, the 7-day rolling average positivity rate was 9.2%, according to Malcolm, although it is a lagging indicator and does not include record high case counts of the past week. 

Minnesota has now seen 164,865 cases of COVID-19 since the onset of the pandemic. Of those, 27,041 are active cases and require the infected person to remain isolated.  

MDH also reported 25 new deaths attributed to COVID-19 Thursday, bringing the state’s death toll to 2,555. Twelve of the deaths were in the Twin Cities metro area while the rest were in Greater Minnesota. 

Seventeen of the 25 people who died lived in long-term care or assisted living facilities. To date, approximately 71% of the state’s cases have been in those types of facilities. 

Hospitalizations for COVID-19 remain at record high levels. There were 931 people in Minnesota hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Wednesday, according to the latest MDH data. Of those, 216 were in the ICU. 

Malcolm said the outbreak is now statewide, with case numbers increasing particularly rapidly in the western and central parts of the state.

'No barrier' COVID-19 testing push continues for 8th week

The Minnesota Department of Health announced Thursday it woud continue its statewide “no-barrier” COVID-19 testing push for an eighth week, with new testing sites in Burnsville, Morris, Owatonna and Stillwater. The National Guard will provide support at these sites.

The testing is free and available to anyone who wants it, with or without symptoms. It will be nasal swab testing that will be processed by either the Mayo Clinic or the University of Minnesota. Saliva testing is also available in Brooklyn Park, Duluth, Moorhead, Mankato, St. Cloud, St. Paul and Winona.