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COVID-19 case numbers rose last week in west central Minnesota, but no related deaths were reported

About 10,000 confirmed new cases of COVID-19 were recorded in the state last week, though the number if probably much higher, because home tests aren't reported to the state. The total number of deaths during the pandemic is nearly 13,000.

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For the second consecutive week, no deaths related to COVID-19 were reported in west central Minnesota, but the number of new cases increased to 530.
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WILLMAR — For the second consecutive week, no deaths related to COVID-19 were reported in west central Minnesota, but the number of new cases in the last week increased to 530, according to the weekly situation update released Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Health.

While the number of confirmed cases increased by 55, the number of cases is likely much higher. Case numbers reported by the state include test results reported to the state. The results of home tests are not reported to the state and not included in the state's report.

Among the new cases reported between July 17 and July 23, Stearns County accounts for 329 of them. Kandiyohi County had 47 new cases, and Meeker County had another 31 cases. The remaining eight counties in the area tracked by the West Central Tribune had a combined total of 154 new cases.

In June 2022, the department began providing a weekly situation update , replacing the daily updates that began in spring 2020. The updates are released each Thursday at 11 a.m. and include data received as of 4 a.m. the preceding Tuesday. When the report refers to numbers from last week, it refers to information gathered from Sunday through Saturday the week before the information is released.

In all cases, the numbers in the updates are preliminary and may change as more information is received.

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Legislators passed a bill this spring to provide $500 million in bonus checks to workers who had to report to their jobs during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic and put themselves at greater risk than those who were able to work remotely.

New cases reported the week of July 17 to July 23 in the 11 counties tracked by the West Central Tribune:

  • Big Stone, 9
  • Chippewa, 19
  • Kandiyohi, 47
  • Lac qui Parle, 14
  • Meeker, 31
  • Pope, 18
  • Redwood, 15
  • Renville, 25
  • Stearns, 329
  • Swift, 12
  • Yellow Medicine, 11

The state's cumulative number of cases is now listed at 1,590,564, including reinfections. People who have tested positive for COVID-19 again more than 90 days after an initial lab-confirmed positive test are considered to have a reinfection.
The state’s current total number of deaths attributed to COVID-19 is now at 12,953. an increase of 46 since last week's report.

The state also reports daily vaccine administration numbers. As of July 26, 3,957,443 Minnesotans have received one dose and 3,736,981 have completed the vaccine series statewide. The number of people listed as being up-to-date with their vaccines, meaning they have also had booster shots, is 1,726,340.

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In 42 years in the newspaper industry, Linda Vanderwerf has worked at several daily newspapers in Minnesota, including the Mesabi Daily News, now called the Mesabi Tribune in Virginia. Previously, she worked for the Las Cruces Sun-News in New Mexico and the Rapid City Journal in the Black Hills of South Dakota. She has been a reporter at the West Central Tribune for nearly 27 years.

Vanderwerf can be reached at email: lvanderwerf@wctrib.com or phone 320-214-4340
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The Tribune publishes Records as part of its obligation to inform readers about the business of public institutions and to serve as a keeper of the local historical record. All items are written by Tribune staff members based on information contained in public documents from the state court system and from law enforcement agencies. It is the Tribune’s policy that this column contain a complete record. Requests for items to be withheld will not be granted.
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