Nearly 700 more positive COVID-19 cases and seven deaths were reported in Thursday's update from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH). That brings the death toll in the past five-plus months of the pandemic in Minnesota to 1,745.
Overall, 1,298 of Minnesota's 1,745 COVID-19 deaths have been residents of long-term care or assisted-living facilities, whom the CDC says are more vulnerable to severe illness from the virus.
One of the newly reported deaths was a person in their 40s from Ramsey County, which marks the 25th death of a Minnesota patient aged in their 40s, according to MDH data.
The number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 decreased from 321 Wednesday to 309 Thursday, in addition to the number of ICU patients dropping from 152 to 148.
Thursday's update includes 698 new cases of the coronavirus, eight of which have been removed for an official count of 690. Those positive cases are the result of 9,167 people tested, creating a 24-hour reporting period test positivity rate of 7.53%.
The daily positive test rate is lower from the perspective of positive results (690) divided by total completed tests (13,810). In that case, the positivity rate is 4.99%. The tests completed number is always higher than the people tested because some people get tested multiple times.
The test positivity rate over a 7-day average, based on total number of people tested, according to Johns Hopkins University, was 6.33% as of Wednesday.
"If you go above 5 percent it indicates that you may be heading back into a phase of more rapid spread of the disease," said MDH Commissioner Jan Malcolm.
Coronavirus in Minnesota by the numbers:
- Total tests: 1,322,220 (up from 1,308,264)
- People tested: 1,030,093 (up from 1,020,926)
- Positive cases: 67,308 (up from 66,618)
- Deaths: 1,748 (up from 1,738)
- Currently hospitalized: 309 (down from 321)
- Patients in intensive care: 148 (down from 152)
- Patients no longer requiring isolation: 60,605 (up from 60,242)
There have also been 46 deaths where COVID-19 is listed by doctors as the "probable" cause, though it's not included in the official COVID-19 death toll.
Note: Previous BMTN updates have shown the test positivity rate based on total number of completed tests, whereas going forward the daily test positivity rate will be based on positive results from total number of people tested (some patients are tested multiple times, which drives up the testing total).