Minnesota reported 4,906 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 262 hospitalizations Tuesday, a record-high number of new coronavirus patients admitted in a single day.
The new figures come amid a bleak month for Minnesota. The state’s positivity rate has surpassed 10% — double the rate indicating controlled spread of COVID-19 — and the state reported record-high daily case totals for multiple consecutive days last week.
Health officials have said the coronavirus’ spread is driven by informal social gatherings among family and friends, and they urge Minnesotans to remain vigilant with social distancing, wearing masks and avoiding crowds and indoor get-togethers.
The state also reported 23 new deaths Tuesday, bringing the death toll to 2,698. More than 1,200 Minnesotans are hospitalized, and health care systems are starting to feel the strain. Last week, ICUs across the state were at 98% capacity in the metro and 92% elsewhere, the Star Tribune reported.
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz is expected to announce tighter restrictions on bars, restaurants, weddings and informal social gatherings Tuesday afternoon.
“This is a dangerous phase of this pandemic. We’re in the midst of a surge in case positivity and hospitalizations,” Walz said Monday, when he also announced the opening of more than a dozen COVID-19 testing sites statewide.