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6 more COVID-19 deaths confirmed in North Dakota; active cases, hospitalizations rise

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North Dakota's Health Department on Wednesday reported six more coronavirus-related deaths and another jump in COVID-19 hospitalizations.

The new deaths reflected on the department's virus dashboard brought to 18 the number reported in the past five days, and increased the state's pandemic death toll to 1,629. The state no longer publicly reports the county, sex and age range of newly confirmed deaths, but Burleigh County's total on the dashboard increased by one on Wednesday, to 219. Morton County's total remained unchanged, at 104.

COVID-19 hospitalizations reached 172, an increase of eight from Tuesday. Fewer than 11% of staffed hospital beds statewide were available, according to the dashboard.

The most recent state data showed 218 available staffed inpatient beds and 18 available intensive care unit beds statewide. In Bismarck, Sanford Health had no available inpatient beds and one ICU bed; CHI St. Alexius Health had no available beds listed in either category.

Since the onset of the pandemic in March 2020 there have been 135,728 confirmed COVID-19 cases in North Dakota, including 812 cases confirmed Wednesday from 11,107 tests completed Tuesday. State officials calculated a positivity rate of 7.75%, and a 14-day rolling average test positivity rate of 7.94%. That rate has been above the state target of less than 5% for six weeks.

Active COVID-19 cases rose by nearly 300 from Tuesday, to 4,379, with 872 in Burleigh County and 325 in Morton County. Burleigh had the most active cases in the state, with Cass County, home to Fargo, close behind with 863.

There have been a total of 5,329 COVID-19 hospitalizations in North Dakota during the pandemic, and 129,720 total recoveries documented by the state.

More information

The state's vaccine dashboard shows 53.8% of eligible North Dakota adults and 31.3% of adolescents in the 12-18 age group are considered fully vaccinated. North Dakota has one of the lowest vaccination rates in the U.S., according to the the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People can go to https://www.ndvax.org or call 866-207-2880 to see where COVID-19 vaccine is available near them.

The coronavirus transmission risk is considered substantial or high in all 53 North Dakota counties except Renville, according to the CDC's COVID-19 data tracker website. The CDC recommends people in those risk categories wear masks in public indoor settings.

A list of free COVID-19 testing offered by local public health units is at health.nd.gov/covidtesting. For more detailed information on coronavirus in North Dakota, go to www.health.nd.gov/coronavirus. For more information on coronavirus variants, go to https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/transmission/variant.html.

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