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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — State health officials announced that the number of positive coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Minnesota has risen to 689 on Wednesday, up from 629 on Tuesday. Five more people also died, bringing the death total to 17 in the state.
According to a map from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), most of the positive cases so far are in the Twin Cities metro.
Hennepin County alone has 218 positive cases. Ramsey County has 66.
MDH officials continue to stress that the number of lab-confirmed positive cases is “just the tip of the iceberg” and we all should be assuming that the virus is spreading through communities.
According to a MDH chart, 30% of those infected in Minnesota were likely exposed through community transmission.
Approximately 21,191 people have completed tests in the state’s Public Health Lab and external laboratories, health officials say.
Of those tested positive, 54 are currently being hospitalized with 27 patients in intensive care units. There are 342 patients who no longer need to be isolated.
In total, 122 patients have needed hospitalization so far due to COVID-19.
MDH officials say the median age for those infected is 47 years old. The age range is 4 months old to 104 years old. On Tuesday, health officials said the 4-month-old is doing well.
The ages of those hospitalized is 6 years old to 95 years old. The ages of those in ICU range from 33 years old to 95 years old.
For patients who have died, their ages range from 58 years old to 95 years old. The median age of those who died is 84.
In a daily briefing Wednesday, MDH Commissioner Jan Malcolm said with holidays coming up in the next week as numbers of cases increase, it’s even more important to continue to stay home and avoid gatherings with anyone outside your home.
“This includes only having telephonic or virtual visits with your loved ones in nursing homes or assisted living,” she said.
Wednesday is also National Walking Day, and Gov. Tim Walz encouraged Minnesotans to get out and enjoy the weather, but not to “bunch up” and continue social distancing practices.
“Give a wide berth to one another. Go out, stretch your legs,” Walz said. “Enjoy the great outdoors.”
Follow updates from the daily briefing on Pat Kessler’s Twitter page.
For most people, COVID-19 symptoms are mild. However, the disease can be deadly for the elderly and those with sensitive lungs. Even so, the vast majority of people who contract the virus recover.
Health officials say those with questions about COVID-19 can call the Minnesota Department of Health hotline at 651-201-3920.