(FOX 9) - Over 50% of Minnesotans are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the latest data from the state health department.
As of Thursday, an estimated 60.9% of eligible Minnesotans have at least one dose of the vaccine. Gov. Tim Walz has pledged to lift the state’s indoor mask mandate when that number hits 70% or by July 1, whichever comes first.
At the current pace, Minnesota would pass the 70% mark around June 21, but the pace of vaccinations continues to slow.
Children ages 12-15 can now start getting vaccinated against COVID-19 after the CDC authorized the use of the Pfizer vaccine for that age group, which adds about 300,000 more Minnesotans to the vaccine eligible population.
A total of 4.7 million vaccine doses have been administered in Minnesota to date.
Meanwhile, MDH reported 1,011 new cases of COVID-19 and 19 more deaths Thursday. Minnesota has now seen 591,445 COVID-19 cases and 7,274 deaths attributed to the virus since the pandemic began.
The 1,011 newly reported cases were out of 34,474 tests, a 2.9% positivity rate. Minnesota’s seven-day rolling average positivity rate has increased slightly to 6% from a recent low of 5.8%. Anything over 5% is a concern for MDH because it indicates a high rate of community transmission of the virus.
Four of the 19 deaths reported on Thursday were people under the age of 65. Six of the deaths were in long-term care facilities. Seven were in the seven-county Twin Cities metro.
Hospitalizations for COVID-19 and ICU cases continue to decrease week over week. There are currently 453 people hospitalized with COVID-19 across Minnesota, 129 of whom are in the ICU, compared to 565 and 152 at this time last week.