By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – As the Food and Drug Administration authorized booster shots for all adults on Friday, health officials in Minnesota reported an additional 5,162 cases and 30 deaths.

Two people in their 40s were reported among those that died; one was from Anoka county and the other was from Ramsey County. Since the pandemic started, 9,155 Minnesotans have succumbed to the virus, while the state has recorded 871,203 positive cases.

The average positivity rate is still on the climb, with a figure of 10.8% as of Nov. 11, due to data lag. An average of over 10% is considered “high risk,” and the state has not seen levels this high since December of 2020.

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With the holidays approaching, health officials are encouraging caution. Doctors say to wear a mask when shopping inside, and when possible, interact with people outside.

Still, the best way to protect yourself is to get the vaccine, experts say. Those who qualify for the booster are also encouraged to get it. The Center for Disease Control must weigh in on boosters for all adults before it officially gets green-lit. An advisory panel is scheduled to meet on Friday afternoon to vote on the updated recommendations.

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In Minnesota, over 7.5 million vaccine doses have been administered, and 786,726 booster shots have been distributed. Data from MDH show that 64% of the state’s population has received their first dose, and 14% of children between 5 and 11 – the group most recently made eligible – have one dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

Still, hospitals are feeling the burden of the COVID surge, as 340 patients were in the ICU and 1,074 were in non-ICU hospital beds as of Thursday afternoon. The state is seeing 19.9 hospitalizations per 100,000 people. Health care workers report seeing ICUs near capacity like late last year, before vaccines were widely available.