Minnesota reported 7,942 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday as test positive, hospitalizations, and death rates continue to climb during the state’s fourth COVID-19 surge.
The new cases reported on Tuesday are from multiple days on weekends because the state now only reports new results on weekdays. Despite an irregular reporting schedule, the data shows that the latest spike, which began in August, shows no sign of a downturn.
The number of patients requiring inpatient treatment rose over the weekend from 912 on Friday to 960 on Monday, of which 254 are in the intensive care unit. Open hospital beds remain in short supply across much of the state, primarily due to staff shortages.
There were also 10 new deaths due to COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the death toll to 8,330. The ages of recent deaths ranged from 40 to 90 years: six of them lived in private homes, and four of them were in long-term care.
The death rate is reported to be about twice as high as a month ago.
School-aged children continue to be the group with the highest number of new infections, with children aged 10-14 being in the lead. But now the number of cases is growing among middle-aged residents.
Almost all new infections are caused by the more contagious delta variant. Severe cases are on the rise among young people who have not yet been vaccinated.
Health officials say the best way to avoid serious illness and slow the spread of the coronavirus is to get vaccinated. Of the 3.2 million fully vaccinated Minnesota residents, more than 98 percent reported no new cases.
The number of doses of vaccine administered has increased in recent weeks as cases of the disease have skyrocketed in the state. More than 110,000 vaccinations were given in the last week of September, up from about 53,500 doses the previous week.
Minnesota has administered 6.6 million doses of the vaccine, and 3.4 million received at least one dose. About 73 percent of eligible Minnesotans ages 12 and older have had at least one vaccine.