COVID-19 cases are rising at an alarming rate in Mille Lacs County.

So much so, that the per capita positivity numbers now rank ninth in the entire United States.

That’s according to the federal Center for Disease Control in a Monday, Nov. 15 report detailing COVID-19 activity last week, Nov. 7-13.

As a matter of fact, Minnesota led the nation in per capita COVID-19 infections, and four of the top 10 counties in the nation were from Minnesota when it comes to number of infections per 100,000 residents on a daily basis over the seven days ending Friday, Nov. 12. Nome, Alaska is at the top of the national list averaging 251 cases per day per 100,000 people last week. In Minnesota, Wadena County was third in the nation last week with a daily average of 164 cases per 1000,000 residents, Mille Lacs and Dodge counties tied for eighth with a daily average of 126 cases per 1000,000, followed by Goodhue County with 124 cases per 100,000 people.

On Monday, Nov. 15, the Minnesota Department of Health was reporting the latest number of total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Mille Lacs County was 4,471 cases. To date, there have been 69 Mille Lacs County residents who have died of COVID-19, according to the Minnesota Department of Health. There were currently 232 cases in Mille Lacs County, according to the Monday, Nov. 15 report. According to the CDC, Mille Lacs County averaged 12.61 people being hospitalized with COVID-19 each day over the 7 days ending on the Nov. 15 report.

The CDC states that there is a high transmission rate of COVID-19 in Mille Lacs County and recommends everyone in Mille Lacs County wear a mask in public, indoor settings.

Through Friday, Nov. 12, 13,806 Mille Lacs County residents, or 52.5, were reported as being fully vaccinated, while 14,760 people, or 56.2 percent reported having at least one COVID-19 vaccine, according to the CDC. Among residents age 65 and over, 99.2 percent are reported as being fully vaccinated, according to the CDC.

For information about scheduling Covid-19 vaccines in Mille Lacs County, visit

The Mille Lacs County Department of Public Health is also offering Moderna booster shots at the county government center in Milaca. Visit the same website listed above to register for the booster shots, or call 320-983-8208 to reach health department staff.

A free COVID-19 testing site in Milaca’s Rec Park is doing a brisk business. The clinic is open Mondays and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the Gorecki Community Center adjacent to the splash pad in Milaca.


Jeff Hage is the managing editor of the Monticello Times. He majored in journalism at the University of Wisconsin- Eau Claire.

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