MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Health Department (MDH) released its latest COVID-19 data Thursday, reporting 1,158 additional positive cases — the first time daily cases have breached 1,000.

According to MDH, the large spike in cases and tests completed (21,144) is partially attributed to a backlog due to inconsistent reporting by a lab, Valley Medical.

“These higher counts are partially due to a backlog of data belatedly reported by a Minnesota provider and lab, Valley Medical, which has had an inconsistent record of reporting results to the state despite the requirements of the communicable disease reporting rule,” MDH said. “This episode shows the importance of laboratories and providers understanding and consistently complying with disease reporting requirements that are not new.”

The state has now breached 72,000 positive cases confirmed (72,390) since the pandemic began, with 64,876 of those patients no longer needing to quarantine themselves. About 8,000 health care workers have tested positive for the virus.

According to the MDH, there are 305 patients currently being treated for COVID-19 in Minnesota hospitals, with 139 of those needing intensive care units. A total of 6,326 patients have needed hospitalization for the virus since the pandemic began.

MDH also reported 13 additional deaths, the first time since mid-June that the state saw two consecutive days of reporting double-digit deaths for COVID-19. Six of those deaths involved patients in long-term care settings and seven in private residences. A total of 1,806 deaths have been reported so far, with 1,331 of those involving someone in long-term care.

According to the state’s Dial Back Dashboard, the positivity rate for Minnesota remains at 5% as of Aug. 17, due to data lag.

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