The Northland's 10 counties reported the lowest daily total of new positive COVID-19 cases since Sept. 10, 2020. The region had 12 new positive cases on Wednesday.

In a Wednesday afternoon Minnesota Department of Health media briefing, Commissioner Jan Malcolm said while the low number of new cases across the state is something to celebrate, it is too soon to know whether this is due to low transmission rates or a decrease in testing. The low number of cases also follows a holiday weekend, as did the low numbers in September 2020, following the Labor Day weekend.

However, more than 50% of the state's total population has received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, which could also be a contributing factor to the smaller amount of cases reported.

“I think people can feel very reassured by the strength of the data that the CDC has put out about the real-world experience of vaccine effectiveness," Malcolm said.

Across Minnesota, there were no new deaths reported on Wednesday and 128 new cases. Wisconsin reported 243 new cases and 16 deaths, including one in Douglas County.

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New cases and seven-day averages in Northland counties:

  • Aitkin — 0; 0.3.
  • Carlton — 1; 2.
  • Cook — 0; 0.3.
  • Itasca — 1; 4.
  • Koochiching — 0; 3.1.
  • Lake — 0; 0.4.
  • St. Louis — 4; 9.
  • Ashland — 0; 0.1.
  • Bayfield — 1; 0.7.
  • Douglas — 5; 3.6.

According to data reported Wednesday, 255 more Northlanders received a first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and 347 people became fully vaccinated. The region's population is now 48% fully vaccinated, and 53% of Northlanders have gotten at least one dose of vaccine.

Percentage of people with at least one vaccine dose in each county:

  • Aitkin — 49%.
  • Carlton — 57%.
  • Cook — 71%.
  • Itasca — 45%.
  • Koochiching — 45%.
  • Lake — 55%.
  • St. Louis — 55%.
  • Ashland — 53%.
  • Bayfield — 60%.
  • Douglas — 51%.

Please note: Beginning Saturday, June 12, the COVID-19 update will appear weekly in the Saturday print edition of the Duluth News Tribune.