Most area counties saw their 14-day COVID-19 case rates decrease in Thursday’s report from the Minnesota Department of Health.
One county, Big Stone, saw its case rate increase, but by just two points.
Lac qui Parle County has the highest case rate in the state at 78.25 cases per 10,000 residents. However, that score is 30 points lower than a week ago, as case rates across the state continue to fall.
The number of area schools reporting COVID-19 exposures has also fallen.
School districts track positive cases in their buildings and consult with public health officials and other sources to determine how to operate their schools during the pandemic. The case rate can be used in making decisions, too.
The state releases the case rate report every Thursday.
The case rate measures the county’s number of newly confirmed cases over a two-week period per 10,000 residents. The state divides the number of new cases by the number found by dividing a county’s population by 10,000.
The state considers a 14-day case rate of 10 or higher to represent an elevated risk of COVID-19 transmission in the community, especially when the level is sustained or increases over time.
This list includes the current case rate for area counties from Dec. 20 to Jan. 2 and how it changed from a week ago:
- Big Stone County: 45.85, up
- Chippewa County: 42.46, down
- Kandiyohi County: 38.91, down
- Lac qui Parle County: 78.25, down
- Meeker County: 34.23, down
- Pope County: 27.32, down
- Redwood County: 30.66, down
- Renville County: 42.80, down
- Stearns County: 36.41, down
- Swift County: 21.25, down
- Yellow Medicine County: 47.63, down
Separately, the Minnesota Department of Health each week also updates its list of school buildings that reported five or more confirmed cases of COVID-19 in students or staff who were in the building while infectious during a two-week reporting period.
Area school buildings on the list are as follows: Prairie Woods Elementary, New London; Eden Valley Secondary, Eden Valley; Cedar Mountain Elementary, Franklin; Renville County West Elementary, Renville; Benson Secondary, Benson; Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg Elementary, Murdock; Yellow Medicine East High School, Granite Falls.
School buildings that have not reported a new case for 28 days will be removed. If five or more cases are reported in a school building in a subsequent two-week period, they will once again be listed.
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