MN Government Updates 12.18

Minnesota Department of Health Briefing

This afternoon, officials with the Minnesota Department of Health conducted a press briefing with reporters to update the public on the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

Commissioner Jan Malcolm, Department of Health

  • Commissioner Malcolm reported 2,737 new cases of COVID-19. This brings the state’s total number of COVID-19 cases to 391,889.
  • Yesterday, 63,994 COVID-19 lab tests were processed.
  • Another 65 Minnesotans died due to COVID-19, with 36 of those deaths being residents of long-term care facilities. The state’s total number of COVID-19 deaths is now at 4,723.
  • Currently, 1,144 patients are hospitalized due to COVID-19 with 270 of those in the ICU.
  • The seven-day COVID-19 test positivity average is 9.7%
  • Commissioner Malcolm said it’s still critical for Minnesotans to keep their guard up and follow preventative measures as the state is still in a high risk situation.

Director Kris Ehresmann, Infectious Disease Epidemiology, Prevention, and Control Division

  • Director Ehresmann said the state is anticipating 94,900 doses for the first shipment of the Moderna vaccine assuming it is approved by the FDA. The primary focus will be vaccinating staff and residents of long-term care facilities across the state.
  • Already, 947 healthcare workers in Minnesota have received the Pfizer vaccine.
  • Minnesota is expecting 33,150 doses of the Pfizer vaccine next week. This is less than the initial projection by the federal government of around 58,000 doses.
  • When asked whether individuals who have received the COVID-19 vaccine can still transmit the virus to others, Director Ehresmann said that if you’ve had COVID-19 and recovered, you have 90 days when you wouldn’t be a risk of transmitting to others (according to the CDC). However, there is not data yet on whether vaccinated individuals can continue to spread the virus to others.

Amos A. Briggs | Government Relations
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