Area counties combined for 2,394 confirmed COVID-19 cases this week, a 39% increase from last week’s total.
The uptick indicates the south central Minnesota region remains on the upswing of a case wave bought on by the contagious omicron variant.
This week’s 39% uptick was a smaller rise than last week’s 72% increase, according to data from the Minnesota Department of Health.
Having a smaller percentage increase for the week could indicate the current rise is slowing down. Care levels are expected to drop fairly fast once the omicron wave peaks.
While case totals continued to increase this week, death counts are showing signs of slowing down. The nine county region had no newly confirmed death on Friday, keeping its January toll at 22 through 21 days.
Statewide, there were 36 newly confirmed COVID-19 deaths. Minnesota’s pandemic toll rose to 11,151, while south central Minnesota’s toll is at 441.
All nine area counties had at least 16% increase in cases this week. Watonwan County had the biggest jump at 88%, going from 72 to 135 weekly cases. Faribault County had a 34% increase, with 134 cases and Martin County also saw an increase of 34% with 179 cases for the week.