Skip to main content

Increasing clusters of COVID-19 traced to workplaces, social settings in Minnesota

As of Monday, 1,063 of the state's 2,158 ICU beds were occupied.

Testing in Minnesota has been increasing, and with it are more confirmed cases of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. And while colleges and schools have been the main focus of recent outbreaks, Minnesota health officials say they're also tracking more clusters and outbreaks associated with workplaces and social gatherings. 

Clusters of cases in Minnesota workplaces – defined as three or more COVID-19 cases among employees – have been traced over the duration of the pandemic to: 

  • 89 agri businesses (processing, dairy, bakeries, grocery stores)
  • 40 meat processing plants
  • 182 manufacturing plants
  • 246 other general businesses

Additionally, 77 bars and restaurants have been investigated for outbreaks, which are defined as an establishment being linked to at least seven confirmed or likely cases of COVID-19. Of the 77, 47 had at least seven cases to be counted as an outbreak, with 1,416 total cases linked to those establishments. 

There have been 37 outbreaks traced to weddings, 11 to funerals, 22 to gyms/fitness centers and 62 more linked to other social settings. A recent funeral in Martin County has so far led to 39 confirmed COVID-19 infections, including one person hospitalized, while an outdoor wedding at an undisclosed location resulted in 11 infections and two hospitalizations. 

"We're seeing more and more instances where we have large groups gathering together with little or no social distancing and no masking, and all of those events are contributing to our case numbers," said Kris Ehresmann, infectious disease director with the Minnesota Department of Health. 

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

She said that those events have a ripple effect that generate more cases.

"We're seeing sort of that building, cumulative affect of lots of cases from clusters as well as the ripple effect of all those cases," Ehresmann added. 

The health department has reported at least 900 new cases of COVID-19 in 10 of the past 12 days (through Monday), though the increase in cases is partially a testament to rising testing numbers. 

However, Ehresmann noted Monday that the 7-day test positivity rate in Minnesota was at 5.4%, the second day in a row about the 5% caution threshold that can indicate more aggressive transmission of the virus. 

Latest forecast from Novak Weather

Next Up

Kandiyohi County Courthouse

2 charged for fentanyl overdose death of 19-year-old

The-19-year-old died from a fentanyl overdose last month.

storm, severe weather

Severe thunderstorm watch: Hail, 65 mph gusts, tornadoes possible

The watch is just north of the Twin Cities metro area.

Lake Minnetonka

The staggering rise of Minnesota's most famous lakes this spring

Imagine dumping Lake Minnetonka into Lake Superior 47 times.

Marijuana, cannabis

Minnesota Senate shoots down latest marijuana legalization attempt

The bill didn't receive the required votes for further consideration on Wednesday.

tree

Minneapolis wants to use $1M in federal cash to plant 200,000 trees

The goal is to have these trees planted by the year 2040.

Screen Shot 2022-05-18 at 12.54.22 PM

MOA theater to debut wrap-around, 270-degree movie screen

The new technology will expand the movie screen onto the side walls of the theater auditorium.

Trevor Scott May

Driver ejected in fatal Roseville crash identified as 30-year-old

The crash temporarily shutdown westbound Highway 36.

Kim Crockett

Endorsed candidate's campaign video used antisemitic trope at MN GOP convention

The video aired before GOP-backed secretary of state candidate Kim Crockett's speech at the state party convention.

covid

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Wednesday, May 18

More than 2,000 new cases in today's report.

Related

SARS-CoV-2, novel coronavirus

4 more deaths as Minnesota's COVID-19 crisis grows

Patients still hospitalized range in ages from 6 to 98.

covid-19, coronavirus, ICU

Tuesday's Minnesota COVID-19 figures; ICU cases rise again

Total hospitalizations dropped, though ICU cases increased.

restaurant-602894_1280

22 bars, restaurants added to list of those linked to COVID-19 outbreaks

The Minnesota Department of Health has recorded 51 bars and restaurants tied to coronavirus outbreaks.

Cowboy Jacks

4 Minnesota bars linked to COVID-19 outbreaks

More than 130 cases have resulted from people congregating at the bars.

SARS-CoV-2, novel coronavirus

Coronavirus: 5 more deaths as the COVID-19 outbreak continues

The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention says COVID-19 is widespread in Minnesota.

wedding

Minnesota wedding now linked to 75 COVID-19 cases

More than a quarter of the attendees have been infected, according to state health officials.

heart monitor, hospital

What health officials have learned about COVID-19 deaths in MN

As of Tuesday, medical records of 146 of 405 hospitalized COVID-19 patients in Minnesota have been evaluated.