MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota’s rate of new coronavirus infections has been worst in the nation over the past seven days, according to the latest federal data, and has brought the state’s hospitals closer to capacity.
State health leaders encouraged Minnesotans to protect themselves with mask-wearing and social distancing measures that Gov. Tim Walz no longer has authority to impose. Recent gains in COVID-19 booster and pediatric vaccinations should help, but won’t have an immediate impact because the shots take days to coax immune responses.
“We are in the middle of a COVID blizzard right now in Minnesota, so that’s a challenge,” state infectious disease director Kris Ehresmann said. “If we could get people to consider implementing the layered mitigation, if we could get more people vaccinated and if people continue to seek out boosters, that will make a difference.”