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The daily coronavirus update: 15 more deaths; case positivity rate slips below 5 percent in Minnesota

More than 70 percent of cases in Minnesota are now believed to be the more transmissible B117 variant.

Photo: CDC/Alissa Eckert

MinnPost provides updates on coronavirus in Minnesota Monday 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 May 19, 2021:

Fifteen more Minnesotans have died of COVID-19, the Minnesota Department of Health said Wednesday, for a total of 7,325.

Of the people whose deaths were announced Wednesday, four were in their 90s, two were in their 80s, one was in their 70s, four were in their 60s, three were in their 50s and one was in their 40s. Five of the 15 people whose deaths were announced Wednesday were residents of long-term care facilities.

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MDH also said Wednesday there have been 596,186 total cases of COVID-19 in Minnesota. That number is up 654 from the total announced on Tuesday and is based on 17,546 new tests. The most recent seven-day case positivity rate, which lags by a week, is 4.9 percent — below the 5 percent threshold considered cause for concern for the first time since mid-March. You can find the seven-day positive case average here.

More than 70 percent of cases in Minnesota are now believed to be the more transmissible B117 variant.

As of Monday, the most recent day of data available, 2,749,383 people in Minnesota, or 49.4 percent of the population, had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. 42.6 percent of the population has completed the vaccine series. More data on vaccines here.

MDH officials said the state has now seen 2,249 breakthrough COVID-19 cases — those that occur after a person is considered fully vaccinated. That represents roughly 0.1 percent of vaccinated people. The average age of breakthrough cases is 70, and two-thirds of people with documented breakthrough cases are women.

The most recent data available show 112 Minnesotans are hospitalized in intensive care with COVID-19, and 308 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.

State Fair site giving J&J shots

The state vaccination site at the State Fair will use J&J vaccines for the next couple weeks. Unlike the two-dose Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, people who receive the J&J are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after just one vaccination. Recipients of the J&J vaccine must be 18 or older.

The site is open from noon to 8 p.m. daily. Appointments can be made here, but you don’t need one to get a vaccine: walk-ins are also accepted.

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There is no cost to the recipient of the vaccine and no insurance or ID is required. 

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MDH’s coronavirus website:

Correction: This article has been updated to correctly state the percentage of vaccinated people who later got COVID-19. It is 0.1 percent.