Nov. 17 COVID-19 update: Hospitalizations nearing 1,700 in Minnesota

Nearly 1,700 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 in Minnesota.
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Nearly 6,000 more cases of COVID-19 are included in Tuesday's update from the state health department, and hospital staff now caring for a record number of patients infected with the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. 

Tuesday's update includes 26 more deaths, bringing the state's total since mid-March to 2,943. Of those, 2,015 were residents of long-term care facilities, including 12 of the 26 newly reported deaths.

The state has reported 486 deaths in the first 17 days of November compared to 423 in all of October.

Hospitalizations

Through Nov. 16, the number off people with COVID-19 hospitalized in Minnesota is 1,669, which marks an all-time high and is nearly 100 more than the 1,574 reported Monday. Of those hospitalized, 346 patients are in intensive care and 1,323 are receiving non-ICU treatment.

There were 580 people hospitalized with COVID-19 just over three weeks ago (Oct. 24).

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

Testing and positivity rates

The 5,945 positive results in Tuesday's update were from a total of 33,542 completed tests, creating a daily test positivity rate of 17.72%.

Those completed tests were from 14,732 people. People are often tested more than once, so the test positivity rate when dividing positives by people tested is 40.35% today.

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 14.90%.

Coronavirus in Minnesota by the numbers

  • Total tests: 3,506,178 (up from 3,472,833)
  • People tested: 2,188,157 (up from 2,173,425)
  • Positive cases: 236,949 (up from 231,018)
  • Deaths: 2,943 – 45 of which are "probable*" (up from 2,917)
  • Active cases: 50,269 (down fro 51,404)
  • Patients no longer requiring isolation: 186,680 (up from 179,614)

* Probable deaths are patients who died after testing positive using the COVID-19 antigen test, which is thought to be less accurate than the more common PCR test.

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