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County cases continue upward curve

Since the end of last year, Carlton County has recorded 246 new Covid-19 cases and two deaths. The cumulative numbers since the start of the pandemic as of Wednesday are 6,361 cases and 82 deaths, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. As of Jan. 6, the positive test rate here was 4.8 percent.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, community transmission is high, with a total of 133 cases reported from Jan. 4-10. There were four new hospital admissions over that time period. Just over 70 percent of the total population over age 5 have at least one vaccination dose, with those 65 years or older at 95 percent for full vaccination. That age group percentage goes down to 83.4 percent for those who also have a booster dose.

Carlton County Public Health and Human Services director Dave Lee said last week he was less optimistic about the region turning a corner on Covid. Masking indoors is still highly recommended, after vaccination. MDH recommends people wear a higher-quality mask now, including N95 masks or, if those aren’t available, a well-fitting mask with at least two layers of tightly woven fabric. People can also layer a disposable mask under a cloth mask to increase effectiveness. Do not wear face coverings made of thinner, loosely woven, or single-layer fabric, such as certain types of masks, scarves, neck gaiters, or bandannas.

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Have you or a loved one struggled to get treatment at a hospital for something other than Covid in recent weeks? Please share your story by calling Pine Knot News at 218-878-9332, emailing [email protected] or stopping by the office at 122 Avenue C in Cloquet.