As of Saturday, two more residents in St. Louis County have died from COVID-19,according to the Minnesota Department of Health’s Saturday update.
The individuals were both between the ages of 85-89 years old. Forty-one St. Louis County residents have now died from COVID-19 and eight deaths were recorded in the last week, the same as the previous week. Nearly all of them were residents of long-term care or assisted living facilities, as several around the county are experiencing outbreaks.
St. Louis County also recorded 48 more people with COVID-19 on Saturday. After a single-day high of 73 new cases in the county was reported yesterday, 48 marks the third-most cases the county has recorded in a day.
Since Sunday, Sept. 20, St. Louis County has recorded an average of roughly 39 new cases a day with a total of 275 more diagnoses this week for an all-time weekly record. That’s 78 more cases than the county recorded the previous record-setting week.
St. Louis County public health officials cite the recent increase in case numbers to outbreaks in long-term care facilities as well as a high number of cases linked to higher education communities. On Friday, the county reported that 88, or 14%, of all cases recorded in St. Louis County in September were linked to the University of Minnesota Duluth.
Already this month, St. Louis County has recorded approximately 200 more diagnoses than all of August, and August recorded more cases than the previous five months combined.
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Other Northeastern Minnesota counties
In addition to St. Louis County, Itasca, Carlton, Aitkin and Koochiching counties all had record-high weeks of COVID-19 cases, too.
In Itasca County, another 15 people tested positive for COVID-19, putting the total number of lab-confirmed cases this week at 56. That’s 17% of all 328 cases the county has recorded since the pandemic began.
Carlton County recorded seven more diagnoses Saturday. That’s brings the week’s total to 34, which is 12.6% of all 270 cases that have been reported in the county.
Aitkin County has four more diagnoses for a total of 12 new lab-confirmed cases this week. That’s 16.7% of all cases ever recorded in Aitkin County.
Koochiching and Lake counties each recorded one more person with COVID-19 on Saturday.
Cases have gone up by 21 this week in Koochiching County. That’s 18.75% of all cases recorded in the county that’s home to no more than 13,000 people.
In Lake County, cases this week have gone up by eight, which is 12.7% of all cases recorded since the pandemic began. Cook County still has not reported any new cases since Aug. 14.
Statewide, Minnesota reported 1,478 more people with COVID-19 and 10 more deaths.
Another 31,093 diagnostic tests have been completed.
In Wisconsin, Douglas, Ashland and Bayfield counties all experienced record-high weeks of COVID-19 cases.
Bayfield and Ashland counties have each recorded more cases so far this month than all the previous months combined.
Ashland County had the steepest increase in COVID-19 cases since Sunday, Sept. 20 with 47 more diagnoses, or nearly half of the 99 the county has recorded since the pandemic began.
Douglas County, which has a larger population, had the most cases out of the three northern counties. On Saturday, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services reported 24 more people with COVID-19, for the most cases the county has recorded in a single day. Since Sunday, Sept. 20, the county has had a total of 65 new diagnoses.
Three more people in Bayfield County tested positive, bringing the week’s total to 21, or roughly 21% of all cases recorded there in the last six months.
Wisconsin reported a record-high number of new people with COVID-19. After reporting 2,533 cases on Sept. 18, the state announced 2,817 more diagnoses on Saturday, along with seven more deaths.
Another 12,584 diagnostic tests have been completed. The positive rate, or the percent of diagnostic tests that come back positive, has remained high in Wisconsin for several days. On Saturday, the rate was 20%.
This story was updated at 2:30 p.m. Sept. 26 with additional information from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. It was originally posted at 12:58 p.m. Sept. 26.