New COVID-19 cases slow slightly in region, 4 more local deaths reported
Within the seven regional counties — Aitkin, Cass, Crow Wing, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Todd and Wadena — there were 1,552 new cases reported between Nov. 28 and Friday, Dec. 4.
New confirmed cases of the disease caused by the coronavirus among residents in the region dropped this week to the lowest number since the first week of November, but the number of deaths remained in the 20s.
Four more deaths among regional residents were reported Friday within the 61 across the state. The 40th COVID-19-related death in Crow Wing County was a person age 95-99. Two Mille Lacs County residents succumbed, ages 65-69 and 95-99, along with a Cass County resident age 70-74. These four brought the total number of deaths recorded this week in the region to 22, with nine of those Crow Wing County residents.
Within the seven regional counties — Aitkin, Cass, Crow Wing, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Todd and Wadena — there were 1,552 new cases reported between Nov. 28 and Friday, Dec. 4. Because of the Thanksgiving holiday, this total also includes an extra day’s worth of case reports from the Minnesota Department of Health. That is 850 fewer cases than those reported two weeks ago between Nov. 14-20 and 267 more cases than the positive results reported Oct. 31-Nov. 6.
Still, the holiday and days following showed a slowdown in testing, so while cases dipped, it’s likely the data was impacted to some degree. It’s been two weeks since further restrictions went into effect in the state and officials are bracing for what’s expected to be an increase in the upcoming days linked to spread as part of Thanksgiving travel and family gatherings.
On its latest restaurant and social outbreak summary, the health department identified two more local establishments linked to at least five unrelated cases from five households that reported visiting just the one place during the previous month. Those cases are considered unique. The new locations are Dunmire’s Bar and Grill in Brainerd, with 13 associated cases, seven of which were unique, and the Fraternal Order of Eagles in Brainerd, with six cases, five of which were unique.
The health department notes while these cases reported visiting at least one of the investigated establishments, this may not be the true source of their infection. Secondary cases — or further transmission to household members, co-workers or others — are not included in these statistics. Due to incubation period, reporting lag and interview lag, it often takes over a week for enough cases to be identified as an outbreak, according to the health department.
COVID-19 data as of Dec. 4
Aitkin — 810 (+93 since Friday, Nov. 27), with 30 (+1) deaths.
Cass — 1,547 (+214), with 12 (+2) deaths.
Crow Wing — 3,897 (+451), with 40 (+9) deaths.
Mille Lacs — 1,660 (+209), with 34 (+3) deaths.
Morrison — 2,515 (+275), with 31 (+4) deaths.
Todd — 1,917 (+178), with 14 (+2) deaths.
Wadena — 879 (+132), with seven (+1) deaths.
NOTE: These numbers are cumulative since March 21 and many are out of isolation.