We see that you have javascript disabled. Please enable javascript and refresh the page to continue reading local news. If you feel you have received this message in error, please contact the customer support team at 1-833-248-7801.



Minnesota health department shifts to weekly COVID reporting

MDH has reported COVID-19 numbers each weekday since spring 2020 when the virus was first identified in Minnesota. Nearly 1.5 million Minnesotans have tested positive for the virus, 66,282 have been hospitalized and 12,792 have died.

COVID-19 testing file
Registered nurse Stephanie Bunich, of Duluth, uses a nasopharyngeal swab to administer a COVID-19 test in September at the Essentia Health drive-thru COVID-19 testing site at Miller Hill Mall in Duluth. (File / News Tribune).
We are part of The Trust Project.

ST. PAUL — The Minnesota Department of Health will shift from daily to weekly reporting of COVID-19 case numbers, hospitalizations and deaths beginning Thursday, June 30.

The agency said the move is an adaptation as demand continues to drop for laboratory-based COVID-19 screenings at community testing centers. Eight community testing sites are ending regular testing this week in cities including Bemidji and Wadena.

The reporting change is also in response to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shifting its approach to gauging the public health risk posed by the virus.

"As testing behaviors have changed to include more at-home testing and with the CDC COVID-19 community levels focusing on severe disease, local disease activity, and related impacts, we are implementing more sustainable COVID-19 surveillance and data reporting efforts," the agency said in a statement.

MDH has reported COVID-19 numbers each weekday since spring 2020 when the virus was first identified in Minnesota. Nearly 1.5 million Minnesotans have tested positive for the virus, 66,282 have been hospitalized and 12,792 have died.


Minnesota continues to report thousands of new cases each day, but fewer people are dying from COVID-19 than did during surges of earlier variants of the virus. The current dominant omicron variant and its subvariants are generally more contagious and less deadly than the delta variant, which dominated U.S. cases in the second half of 2021.

Daily case counts have not given as complete of a picture of community infection levels as fewer people get tested for COVID-19 through health care providers or state testing sites. In the past six months, sewage data has proven invaluable in predicting surges of the virus and identifying dominant strains. The University of Minnesota offers data from more than 40 wastewater treatment plants across the state.

In addition to changing the reporting schedule, MDH is also rolling out a new website design that features more interactive graphs and charts. The new website will focus on death and hospitalization rates and other trends rather than counts, the agency said, though downloadable data will be available for each graphic.

All but one of the Democratic-Farmer-Labor candidates for statewide office have maintained a fundraising edge in the 2022 campaign.
The statewide office doesn’t always grab headlines in an election year, and the work of the auditor is often not as political or high-profile as other offices says Julie Blaha, a DFLer who is running for her second term in the office.
While metro races will be front and center in the contest for the House, other Greater Minnesota regions could make a big difference in the Senate, where Democrats hold 31 seats. Historic Democratic strongholds in northeast Minnesota’s Iron Range appear to be leaning more toward Republicans, and population centers like Rochester have started to lean more Democratic as they grow and change demographically.
Current guidelines make it rare for media to bring recording equipment into courtrooms. Representatives from media organizations and other groups presented their cases before the high court justices after a court panel presented a report recommending the state not drastically expand camera access.

Alex Derosier covers Minnesota breaking news and state government for Forum News Service.
What to read next
The incident was reported as an “adult male vacuuming nude” to the Baxter Police Department at 10:23 p.m. the same day.
A second community discussion hosted on changing the name of Sibley State Park in west central Minnesota brought together three dozen people with differing views on the proposal.
13 cases have been confirmed in Minnesota since June
Nearly 500,000 birds affected by early autumn surge in avian flu in Minnesota
More than 650,000 birds over 18 sites have been depopulated in Minnesota due to an early autumn surge in highly pathogenic avian influenza.