MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — After plummeting to record lows in the wake of Minnesota’s vaccine rollout, the state’s positivity rate is starting to creep back up.
According to the state’s Dial Back Dashboard, the average positivity rate as of last week was at 1.8%, an increase of 0.7% from where it was at the end of last month. In June, the figure was at 1.1%, the lowest yet recorded.READ MORE: Severe Storms Hit Wisconsin Causing Widespread, 'Unbelievable' Damage
This recent uptick comes as the highly-transmissible Delta variant is spreading rapidly in the United States, especially among those who are not vaccinated.
In Minnesota, vaccination rates have plateaued, although about 70% of adults have gotten at least their first shot.
When figuring the total eligible population, which includes children 12 to 15, the number of people vaccinated is about 56%, with 53% having completed their vaccine series.
In Tuesday’s update, the Minnesota Department of Health reported one additional death and 625 new cases. With about 5,300 people tested in the last 24 hours, that suggests a daily positivity rate of 11.7%.READ MORE: North Mpls. Peace Garden Dedicated To Terrell Mayes Jr. And Other Children Killed By Gun Violence
While the positivity rate has increased this month, the rates for case growth and hospitalizations remain below what health officials consider the threshold for caution.
Still, there are concerns about rising cases heading into fall. On Monday, stocks tumbled across the globe due to concerns over the Delta variant derailing economic recovery efforts.
Also on Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended that all students over 2 years old wear masks when they return to the classroom, even for students who are vaccinated.
The group’s recommendation goes beyond that of the Centers for Disease Control, which said earlier this summer that vaccinated students do not have to wear masks in class.
While it’s unclear how Minnesota schools will respond in the coming weeks, the Minnesota Department of Education said it will follow the CDC’s guidelines.MORE NEWS: Gov. Walz Announces Sunisa Lee Day After Gold Medal Win
Since he no longer wields emergency powers, Gov. Tim Walz will not be able to order a school mask mandate come the fall.