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The daily coronavirus update: Minnesota reports highest single-day death total since February

MDH also reports that one-third of all Minnesotans have been completely vaccinated.

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 April 28, 2021:

Twenty-two more Minnesotans have died of COVID-19, the Minnesota Department of Health said Wednesday, for a total of 7,113.

Of the people whose deaths were announced Wednesday, two were in their 90s, five were in their 80s, seven were in their 70s, two were in their 60s, four were in their 50s, one was in their 40s and one was in their 30s. Four of the 22 people whose deaths announced Wednesday were residents of long-term care facilities.

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The last time MDH reported 20 or more deaths in a single day was Feb. 11. The state has reported 265 deaths in April, which is higher than March (227) but so far lower than February (284). Those reported death tolls don’t include a backlog of 138 deaths reported on March 9. MDH did not say when those deaths happened during the pandemic.

MDH also said Wednesday there have been 572,025 total cases of COVID-19 in Minnesota. That number is up 1,507 from the total announced on Tuesday and is based on 24,496 new tests. The seven-day case positivity rate, which lags by a week, is 6.5 percent. While that’s above a 5-percent threshold the state considers a concerning sign of disease spread, the positivity rate has dropped recently from a high of 7.4 percent after increasing for weeks. 

As of Monday, the most recent data available, 2,478,282 Minnesotans, roughly 44.7 percent of the population, have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. That’s up 9,876 from the day prior. First-dose vaccinations have been dropping for more than a week amid a federal pause on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (which has only recently been lifted) and a slowdown in demand for vaccines.

MDH says 1,833,719 Minnesotans, about 33 percent of the population, have completed a vaccine series.

The most recent data available show 178 Minnesotans are hospitalized in intensive care with COVID-19, and 465 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.

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Minnesota to get more Johnson & Johnson vaccines next week

The state expects to get 12,400 Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines next week after a pause on the product while federal regulators examined reports of rare blood clots.

Kris Ehresmann, MDH’s infectious disease director, said there have been roughly seven per million women under the age of 50 who received the COVID-19 vaccine and had blood clot issues. The risk is even lower for women age 50 and older and men of all ages, Ehresmann said. “The data showed that the benefits of this vaccine outweighed the very small risk,” Ehresmann said.

Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine
REUTERS/Dado Ruvic
Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine
Minnesota health care providers had about 9,600 doses of the J&J vaccine in storage when the pause was announced, but this is the first new shipment since distribution of the vaccine was resumed.

For the week of May 3, Minnesota expects to get 116,800 doses of the Moderna vaccine and 163,800 doses of the Pfizer vaccine. The allocation numbers don’t count vaccines sent directly by the feds to places like pharmacy chains.

More than 50,000 Minnesotans are late on a second vaccine dose

Ehresmann said 52,756 Minnesotans who received a first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine and are eligible for a second dose in the two-shot series haven’t gotten it.

People need both doses, taken about three or four weeks apart, for full protection from COVID-19. Ehresmann said their data includes people with a first dose who are at least a week beyond that window and have not received a second shot.

Minnesota is among the top states for vaccination of seniors.
REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
The New York Times reported earlier this week that nearly 8 percent of people who got a first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine have missed their second dose. Minnesota’s rate is well below that.

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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

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