3,611 new COVID-19 infections and 20 more deaths in Minnesota Friday – Grand Forks Herald

ST. PAUL — Minnesota recorded 20 more COVID-19 fatalities Friday and 3,611 new coronavirus infections, according to the state Department of Health.

Those deaths reported Friday, Oct. 8, were for Minnesotans who ranged in age from their early 50s to their late 90s with three residing in long-term care and 17 in private homes. Four of the deaths occurred in September and 16 in October.

The state’s death toll from the virus is now 8,295 with 4,671 fatalities in long-term care. Another 113 fatalities are suspected to have been caused by COVID-19, but the person never had a positive coronavirus test.

The 3,611 new cases reported Friday were the result of about 54,650 tests, pushing the state’s case total to 735,646 since the pandemic began.

Nearly all of Minnesota’s 5.8 million residents has been screened at least once for COVID-19 and the state has conducted more than 12.8 million coronavirus tests overall.

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The state’s cumulative test-positivity rate is about 5.7% and the current seven-day rolling average is above 7%. Health officials say anything over 5% is a sign the pandemic is not under control.

There are 871 patients hospitalized including 236 in critical condition. Hospital leaders say staffing shortages have tightened hospital capacity.

Health officials say vaccines are the best way to avoid a severe illness and to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Breakthrough cases are becoming more common, but of the 3.1 million Minnesotans who are fully vaccinated roughly 99% have not reported a breakthrough infections.

Minnesota has administered 6.5 million doses of vaccine and 3.4 million residents have gotten at least one dose. Of the vaccine eligible population, age 12 and older, about 73% have gotten at least one shot.