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MN COVID-19 cases trending up as vaccination effort pushes ahead

ST. PAUL, Minn. (FOX 47) -- The number of positive COVID-19 cases in Minnesota continues to trend higher as health officials race to get as many people vaccinated as possible.

"Our seven day average test positivity rate is now at six percent," said Minnesota Department of Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm. "That figure has jumped a whole percentage point in one week."

Malcolm says there are signs of it going up again, even as efforts to get more Minnesotans vaccinated continue. Part of that effort now includes a federal vaccination site set to open next week.

"Yesterday, Governor Walz and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced that Minnesota is going to getting a federally supported community vaccination clinic to reinforce our vaccination efforts here in Minnesota," Malcolm said.

This new vaccination clinic will start on April 14 and operate for eight weeks at the state fairgrounds.

The site will administer the Pfizer vaccine for six weeks to get through both first and second doses, and then the single dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine during the last two weeks.

"This site is going to focus specifically on Minnesotans living in zip codes that are the areas of our community with higher scores on the CDC's social vulnerability index," Malcolm said. "So this includes some of the zip codes near the fairgrounds and community zip codes throughout the metropolitan area that score high on this social vulnerability index."

The site will be allocated 3,000 doses a day, every day, for the eight weeks of operation.

"So this is all means that we'll have more than 100,000 additional people vaccinated during this eight week period of operation," Malcolm said. "And it's important to note that these doses administered at the fairgrounds are in addition to Minnesota's regular statewide vaccine allocations. So this is a boost to the volume of vaccine that we otherwise would [not] have had without this site."

Appointments are required at this vaccination clinic and you can get signed up on the state's vaccine connector website.

Sarah Gannon

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