Dec. 11 COVID-19 update: 94 deaths, declining hospitalizations

It's the third straight day with at least 80 deaths.
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Minnesota's Friday COVID-19 update includes 94 more deaths, including two people aged in their 30s, according to the Minnesota Department of Health.

The young victims were from Anoka and Nicollet counties, respectively. Both were between the ages of 35-39. 

The 94 newly reported deaths brings the number of fatal COVID-19 cases in Minnesota during the pandemic to 4,292. Fifty-two of the 94 deaths were residents of long-term care facilities, which have accounted for 2,819 of the fatalities.

The state has reported 699 deaths through the first 11 days of December after reporting 1,140 fatal cases in November, which is far and away the deadliest month in Minnesota so far.

Hospitalizations

Through Dec. 10, the number of people with COVID-19 hospitalized in Minnesota is 1,461, which is the lowest its been all week and lower than the high point of 1,848 on Nov. 30.

Of those hospitalized, 343 patients were in intensive care and 1,118 are receiving non-ICU treatment.

Here's how many people with COVID-19 were in intensive care by region, through Dec. 10:

  • Metro: 208 (down from 222 the day before)
  • Central: 47 (up from 44)
  • Northeast: 35 (level from 35)
  • Southeast: 27 (down from 29)
  • Northwest: 13 (up from 12)
  • South Central: 7 (up from 4)
  • West Central: 2 (level from 2)
  • Southwest: 4 (down from 5)

Statewide, there were 107 (up from 100 the day before) available staffed ICU beds through Dec. 10. These numbers are directly impacted by both the number of patients in ICU (for all health reasons, not just COVID-19) and the number of available staff. You can see the breakdown by region right here/below.

  • Metro: 43
  • Central: 17
  • Northeast: 7
  • Southeast: 18
  • Northwest: 5
  • South Central: 5
  • West Central: 7
  • Southwest: 5

Note: Hospital totals are preliminary and are subject to adjustment in the days ahead.

Testing and positivity rates

The 3,773 positive results in Friday's update were from a total of 58,497 completed tests, creating a daily test positivity rate of 6.45%, which is the lowest single day positivity rate in weeks. 

The World Health Organization recommended in May that a percent positive rate (total positives divided by total completed tests) of below 5% for at least two weeks is necessary to safely reopen the economy. That 5% threshold is based on total positives divided by total tests.

According to Johns Hopkins University, Minnesota's percent positive over the past seven days is 10.33%.

The 58,497 completed tests were from 18,039 people. People are often tested more than once, so the test positivity rate when dividing positives by people tested is 20.91% today.

Coronavirus in Minnesota by the numbers

  • Total tests: 4,789,829 (up from 4,731,719)
  • People tested: 2,726,470 (up from 2,708,431)
  • Positive cases: 370,968 (up from 367,218)
  • Deaths: 4,292 – 106 of which are "probable*" (up from 4,198)
  • Active cases: 43,459 (up from 42,914)
  • Patients no longer requiring isolation: 327,509 (up from 324,304)

* Probable deaths are patients who died after testing positive using the COVID-19 antigen test, which is not as accurate as the more common PCR test.

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