The number of COVID-19 cases in Carver County has increased to seven, according to the latest figures from the Minnesota Department.

As of March 22, the state health department confirmed a total of 169 positive COVID-19 infections – including the seven in Carver County – and one death related to the disease. State officials have tested nearly 4,500 individuals, including a backlog of nearly 1,700 frozen samples that Mayo Clinic helped the state lab weed through.

Now that the backlog of samples has been cleared, state officials believe they will be able to keep pace with testing demands.

“We believe that we can now keep pace with the volume of priority-population testing,” said Kris Ehresmann, infectious disease director for the Minnesota Department of Health. “We thank Mayo for their assistance.”

A lack of testing supplies initially led to the large backlog, according to state officials.

Currently, the state’s most populous county – Hennepin – has the lion’s share of Minnesota’s confirmed COVID-19 cases with 57, followed by the state’s second most populous county – Ramsey – with 18 confirmed cases.

As of March 22, confirmed COVID-19 cases were present in 27 Minnesota counties. Officials say the total number of people with the virus is likely much larger than the current 169 tally, since the state’s public health lab has tested only 4,680 people out of the state’s 5.6 million residents.

For most people, the coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover within weeks.

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