COVID-19 Wednesday update: Surge decline was short lived, cases back on the upswing – TwinCities.com-Pioneer Press Leave a comment

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Minnesota’s fourth surge in coronavirus cases is back on the rise, erasing a brief downturn in cases from late October.
The state Department of Health reported 43 more deaths Wednesday and 2,956 more infections were recorded. Those who died ranged in age from their 20s to more than 100.
The death toll is 8,761 with 4,773 fatalities in long-term care. Ten of the deaths reported Wednesday lived in long-term care and 33 resided in private homes.
The daily report of COVID-19 fatalities has topped 40 only a handful of times in 2021. Test-positivity is back around 8 percent, closing in on a yearly highpoint.
Nevertheless, trends can shift quickly and this week’s data are impacted by about 8,100 reinfections state officials added to the Minnesota’s case tally on Monday.
Since the pandemic began in March 2020, Minnesota has diagnosed 807,956 coronavirus infections with 799,550 people testing positive, some of them multiple times. About 96 percent of people who’ve tested positive have recovered enough they no longer need to be isolated.
Hospitalizations are also near a 2021 peak with 1,004 patients needing care, including 227 in critical condition. Empty hospital beds are increasingly hard to find in Minnesota.
Gov. Tim Walz announced Tuesday that Benedictine St. Gertrude’s in Shakopee would be the state’s first alternative care site, taking in 30 patients from area hospitals to make room for COVID-19 patients and others with severe illnesses.
An estimated 19,400 Minnesotans currently sick with the coronavirus are recovering at home.
Health officials say vaccines are the best way to avoid a severe infection and slow the spread of COVID-19. However, breakthrough cases are increasingly common.
Of the 3.2 million Minnesotans who are fully vaccinated, 98 percent have not reported a breakthrough case. There have been 57,023 breakthrough infections, about 15 percent of the 380,000 infections recorded in 2021.
Of those, 2,609 have needed hospital care and 372 have died.
Walz visited a community vaccination clinic Wednesday to detail plans to vaccinate 5- to 11-year-olds. Federal regulators gave the OK Tuesday to give children smaller doses of the two-shot Pfizer vaccine.
Minnesota has administered 7 million doses of vaccine, including about 450,000 boosters. More than 3.4 million Minnesotans have gotten at least one dose of vaccine — roughly 62.4 percent of the state’s 5.8 million residents.
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