BEMIDJI -- Beltrami County had its first coronavirus-related death over the weekend according to the Public Health Department.
Beltrami County Public Health Director Cynthia Borgen said on Tuesday that the Minnesota Department of Health has confirmed an individual in their 90s died as a result of COVID-19 over the weekend. Borgen said the individual was hospitalized.
In total there have been 1,721 deaths from the coronavirus in Minnesota, with 1,287 dying in assisted living facilities or nursing homes. For Beltrami County, the first reported death comes as the total number nears 300. As of Tuesday, there have been 279 recorded cases of the coronavirus since the pandemic began.
Beltrami County has recorded most of its positive cases in the past two months. By mid-June, there had been 21 cases. By July 7, the number was at 30, on July 28 it was at 157. By Aug. 4, the total number had reached 200 and this week the amount crossed 270.
Beltrami County now has the highest number of recorded cases when compared to surrounding areas, ahead of Polk County with 161 and Itasca County with 150. Both Cass and Koochiching Counties are in the 80s.
Currently, Borgen's department is monitoring 17 active cases, with two hospitalizations. Across the state, there have been a total of 5,932 hospitalizations since the pandemic started, with 304 in medical centers as of Tuesday, 154 of them being in ICU facilities.
Borgen said recent cases for Beltrami County have been younger individuals.
"We're still seeing a lot of activity in the younger age groups," Borgen said. "People in their 20s make up the majority of new cases, some in their 30s as well."
Because of the ongoing situation, Borgen said it's important for residents to keep up their precautions.
"We're not done," Borgen said. "We're still seeing new cases almost every day. Sometimes it's a number of cases. We're aware there is still transmission happening. We want people to be really thoughtful about maintaining those physical distances, stay in smaller groups, wear masks and be mindful about their behavior."
In the latest update from MDH, there have been a total of 66,061 positive cases with 59,568 out of isolation. MDH also reports that 1.2 million tests have been conducted across the state.