MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Minnesota Department of Health officials announced Saturday an additional 526 cases of COVID-19 and 22 more deaths in the state.

The death toll has now reached 1,170, while 27,501 tests have come back positive. Most of them – 22,253 – have recovered and no longer need to be in isolation.

In the past couple of days, the state has been ramping up testing, administering at least 10,000 tests statewide. The number of people in the ICU also saw a decline since June 3.

MDH’s update came a day after Gov. Walz announced he is relaxing COVID-19 restrictions; Minnesotans can now dine at restaurants, go to the gym, and schedule appointments with their barbers and hairstylists.

These relaxations still have their limits, with restaurants limited to 50% capacity and gyms limited to 25% capacity.

Additionally, in the wake of the death of George Floyd and the subsequent protests, Minnesota health officials are encouraging people who were in large crowds to get tested for COVID-19.

Though many of the protests took social distancing precautions, others forced the protesters into close proximity after police officers cornered them into small spaces using bodily force, tear gas, and rubber bullets. 

According to Assistant Commissioner with the Minnesota Department of Health Dan Huff, those who protested are encouraged to get tested one week after exposure.

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