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The Free Press and MPR News

MANKATO — The Minnesota Department of Health reported 61 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in the nine-county region Sunday, with all area counties reporting new cases.

Blue Earth County was hit the hardest with 33 new cases Sunday, bringing the total to 368. Watonwan County had six new cases, with a total of 196, and Nicollet County reported five new cases, bringing the total there to 128.

Faribault and Sibley counties had three additional cases each, while Le Sueur and Martin counties each reported two new cases. Brown County has the lowest number of positive cases in the region with four new cases reported Sunday, bringing the total there to 27.

Statewide 523 new cases of COVID were reported by the health department Sunday, bringing the cumulative total in Minnesota to 35,549.

Health officials administered 14,997 tests by Sunday, bringing the total number of completed tests to 585,417.

About 9% of all Minnesotans who tested positive for the virus have been hospitalized and 228 remained hospitalized as of Sunday. Eight people died from the virus it was reported Sunday, bringing the total number of COVID-related deaths to 1,425.

One driver of new cases during the past week has been young adults. People in their 20s now make up the largest age group of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota. That news comes after clusters of cases were tied to bars in Mankato and Minneapolis, suggesting some younger adults aren’t doing enough to prevent the virus’ spread as they move back into public spaces.

While recent overall trends in deaths and hospitalizations from the disease are encouraging, health leaders now worry that people are letting down their guard as they return to bars and restaurants, giving the disease a chance to rekindle.

Dan Greenwood is a Free Press staff writer. Contact him at dgreenwood@mankatofreepress.com

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