MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As the CDC updated its mask guidelines to say that everyone, regardless of vaccination status, should wear a mask indoors where the chance of COVID-19 spread is substantial, Minnesota’s health department released its latest virus figures showing 625 more cases and four new deaths confirmed in the last 24 hours.
Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 611,458 positive cases and 7,660 deaths.READ MORE: 9th, 10th School Staffers Die Of COVID-19, State Health Dept. Reports
The health department reports that the rolling average positivity rate is now at 2.8%. While that’s below the line for caution (at 5%), it’s also up notably over recent weeks; earlier this summer, that figure hovered around 1%. There are also a reported five daily new cases per 100,000 Minnesota residents, which marks the first time the state has been at the line of caution since late May.
Hospitalization figures are also showing significant gains day-over-day. The latest figures of those hospitalized show 56 Minnesotans in ICU, compared to fewer than 20 on July 15. There are an additional 146 reported hospitalizations for COVID in the state. The figures show an average of 2.6 new daily hospitalizations per 100,000 residents, which is below the line of caution for now.READ MORE: 'Stop Being So Spoiled,' Trampled By Turtles Tells Those Who Oppose COVID Protocols
As of Wednesday morning, the latest figures from the Minnesota Department of Health showed that about 68.4% of Minnesotans 16 or older had received at least one dose, and 91.5% of those 65 or older had received at least one dose. In total, the state has administered 5,876,029 doses of vaccine, and has also reached about 2.985 million residents having completed their vaccine series.
The CDC’s new recommendations include that all school children in K-though-12 classes wear masks regardless of vaccination status; as of yet, no vaccine has been approved for use among children 12 and younger. Minnesota health department officials say they plan to update Minnesota guidelines and announce them in the near future.MORE NEWS: COVID In Minnesota: 24 More Deaths Confirmed By MDH; 2,434 More Cases
Also on Wednesday, Pfizer says a third dose of its vaccine can strongly boost protection against the Delta variant. Pfizer researchers say a third dose in people age 18 to 55 increases antibody levels against Delta fivefold, and there’s greater than an 11-fold boost in people 65 to 85.
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