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COVID-19 hospitalizations rise to 696 in Minnesota

September 10, 2021 GMT

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Hospitalizations from COVID-19 have risen to 696 in Minnesota, and hospital intensive care beds are at more than 95% capacity, according to state data.

Hospital leaders said the increase in COVID-19 cases is combining with seasonal trauma injuries and other urgent needs, stretching critical care resources.

Dr. Paul Mueller, vice president of Mayo Clinic Health System, Southwest Wisconsin, said hospitals are, by and large, full.

The Minnesota Department of Health reported 18 COVID-19 deaths on Friday and 2,050 new coronavirus infections, raising the state’s pandemic totals to 7,892 deaths and 666,496 cases overall.

The Star Tribune reported it’s common for intensive care units to be above 90% capacity, especially during winter flu season, but these units have been steadily filling up since early August as cases of COVID-19 have been increasing due to the delta variant of the coronavirus.

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The state’s MNTrac monitoring system reported that 1,151 of 1,206 available intensive care beds were being used by patients with COVID-19 or other unrelated medical concerns — a usage rate of 95.4%.

State health officials have been more people to get the COVID-19 vaccine. More than 72% of eligible Minnesotans ages 12 and older have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. The rate increases to more than 92% among more vulnerable senior citizens, but drops below 60% among eligible teenagers.