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The daily coronavirus update: 16 cases of U.K. strain, two cases of Brazil strain reported in Minnesota

The Minnesota Department of Health also reported that 475,200 Minnesotans so far have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

COVID-19
COVID-19
Photo: CDC/Alissa Eckert

MinnPost provides updates on coronavirus in Minnesota Sunday through Friday. The information is published following a press phone call with members of the Walz administration or after the release of daily COVID-19 figures by the Minnesota Department of Health.

Here are the latest updates from February 4, 2021:

465,176 cases; 6,251 deaths

Seventeen more Minnesotans have died of COVID-19, the Minnesota Department of Health said Thursday, for a total of 6,251.

Of the people whose deaths were announced Thursday, five were in their 90s, five were in their 80s, three were in their 70s, two were in their 60s and two were in their 50s. Nine of the 17 people whose deaths announced Thursday were residents of long-term care facilities.

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MDH also said Thursday there have been 465,176 total cases of COVID-19 in Minnesota. That number is up 1,410 from the total announced on Wednesday and is based on 50,330 new tests. The seven-day positive case average, which lags by a week, is 4.3 percent. That’s below a 5-percent “caution” threshold set by state health officials.

As of Tuesday, 475,200 Minnesotans have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. That’s roughly 8.6 percent of Minnesota’s population. The state says 128,694 Minnesotans have completed the two-dose vaccine series.

Minnesota is expected to get 83,825 doses in its next weekly allocation.

The most recent data available show 82 Minnesotans are hospitalized in intensive care with COVID-19, and 287 are in the hospital with COVID-19 not in intensive care. You can find more information about Minnesota’s current ICU usage and capacity here.

More information on cases can be found here.

16 cases of U.K. strain, two cases of Brazil strain reported in Minnesota

Minnesota has now identified 16 cases of the B117 variant of COVID-19, which originated in the United Kingdom and two cases of the P1 variant from Brazil. Of the 16 B117 cases, 12 were among people who had traveled recently, or lived with someone who traveled, said Dr. Ruth Lynfield, the state’s top epidemiologist.

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Minnesota was the first state to announce a case of the P1 variant. The second Minnesotan known to have contracted that version of the disease lives with the first person. There are no other reported P1 cases in the U.S.

Lynfield said across the U.S., there have been 541 cases of the U.K. B117 variant in 33 states and three cases of a B1351 variant from South Africa in two states.

Health officials are tracking the variants since they may transmit easier than dominant strains of COVID-19 and could quickly cause an uptick in cases, especially as vaccination remains slow in the state.

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Around the web

MDH’s coronavirus website: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html

MDH’s phone line for COVID-19 questions, Mon.-Fri. 9 a.m. to 4 p.m: 651-297-1304