ST. PAUL, Minn. (FOX 9) - Over 1.5 million Minnesotans have now received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 903,188 are fully vaccinated, which is about 27% and 16% of the state’s population respectively.
Starting Tuesday, Minnesota is expanding vaccine eligibility to Minnesotans age 16 and up, which state leaders say will help the state reach "the light at the end of the tunnel" and beat the virus.
In a televised speech Friday, Gov. Tim Walz set a goal of being the first state to get 80% of its population vaccinated.
Nearly 80% of Minnesota seniors have at least one dose of the vaccine. As for the seven COVID-19 deaths reported Friday, none lived in long-term care facilities.
All Minnesotans who have not received a vaccine are encouraged to sign up for the COVID-19 Vaccine Connector to get updates on vaccine opportunities and be entered into the random selection process for the state’s Community Vaccination Program sites. Minnesotans can also contact their healthcare provider, local pharmacy or use the Vaccine Locator Map to search for vaccine providers in their area.
Meanwhile, state health officials reported 1,714 new cases of COVID-19 and 7 deaths Friday. This comes amid a recent bump in cases, as Thursday saw the highest amount of new cases since Jan. 10.
The state has seen a total of 512,097 COVID-19 cases and 6,821 deaths since the pandemic began, according to the latest Minnesota Department of Health data.
The 1,714 newly reported cases were out of 38,297 tests—a 4.5% positivity rate. The seven-day rolling average positivity rate, which has been increasing lately, is now up to 4.7%. Anything over 5% is a concern for MDH.
As for the seven COVID-19 deaths reported Friday, none lived in long-term care facilities.