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Burleigh County now has one-fifth of active COVID-19 cases in state

Burleigh County now has one-fifth of active COVID-19 cases in state

From the June 24 recap: Bismarck news you may have missed today series
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The state Department of Health on Wednesday reported 42 more COVID-19 cases in North Dakota, including 12 new cases of the coronavirus disease in Burleigh County.

The data included testing results from Tuesday and some results from Monday that were delayed due to an issue with the electronic reporting system used by physicians and health care systems to report test results to the state lab. The problem has been resolved, according to the state's Joint Information Center.

Eighteen new cases were reported in Cass County, which has long been the state's coronavirus hot spot. State officials are monitoring Burleigh County in case it develops into the next one, with cases rising significantly this month. Gov. Doug Burgum has said that if necessary, the state could establish a task force to focus on combating the spread of the virus in the Bismarck-Mandan area, similar to a group working in the Red River Valley.

Burleigh County has 46 active cases of COVID-19 -- second-most in the state behind Cass County's 90 -- and Morton County has four. Since the pandemic began, 214 people in Burleigh County and 72 in Morton have tested positive.

Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health this week began providing free coronavirus testing on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. It wasn't immediately clear if the data released Wednesday included any results from that testing.

Two new cases were reported in Morton County on Wednesday. Other new cases were in the counties of Grand Forks, McKenzie, Pembina, Ramsey, Ransom, Sioux and Walsh. Sioux County has 16 active cases, fourth-most in the state behind Cass, Burleigh and Grand Forks counties. Sioux County is home to the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation, where mass testing has recently been conducted. 

The newly confirmed cases raise the state total since the pandemic began to 3,362, with 3,044 recoveries, 78 deaths and 27 people still hospitalized. Active cases statewide number 240.

The number of people tested at least once is at 98,689; total tests number 162,468.  

Most people who get COVID-19 recover, experiencing only mild or moderate symptoms such as fever and cough. Others, especially the elderly and people with existing health problems, can experience more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover.

The free testing three days a week in Bismarck is available for anyone seeking a test and does not require an appointment or online registration. It operates each designated day on a first-come, first-served basis from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The testing is at 500 E. Front Ave. People are asked to enter the agency's parking lot from Front Avenue and exit the parking lot to the west via Fifth Street. For those unable to use a vehicle, walk-up testing is available near the east building entrance.

For more information on coronavirus in North Dakota, go to www.health.nd.gov/coronavirus.

Reach Blake Nicholson at 701-250-8266 or blake.nicholson@bismarcktribune.com.

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