Rice County Public Health Department Director Deb Purfeerst and Emergency Management Coordinator for the department Tracy Ackmann-Shaw were guests on today's KDHL AM Minnesota program.

Purfeerst shared Rice County's cases per 100,000 number was 796 as of today just ahead of Hennepin County's 760.

The top 5 counties Cumulative Number of Cases by County of Residence per 100,000 people:

  1. Nobles   7,311
  2. Todd      1,345
  3. Stearns  1,342
  4. Kandiyohi 1,199
  5. Mower    1,039

Counties around Faribault per 100,000 people rates :

  • Olmsted  457
  • Steele     453
  • Dakota    349
  • Scott       346
  • Dodge     261
  • LeSueur  165
  • Goodhue 151
  • Waseca   141
  • Wabasha   83

Purfeerst also said Rice County positive COVID-19 demographics tilt younger than most other counties and the statewide data.  The average age of Rice County residents testing positive is 36.  The statewide average is 41.

78% of Rice County positives are between the ages of 20 and 59.  1% are 80 and older.

Purfeerst says, "That is partly related to a number of local businesses that are really screening very well at their workplace settings and then sending people on to testing if need be.  So our numbers do look a little bit heavier in the younger population than maybe some of the other counties in the state of Minnesota."

None of the 3 deaths reported in Rice County were residents of long-term care or assisted living facilities while statewide over 80% of those who have died from the virus were residents in those settings.

Purfeerst added that is a testament to the excellent job those facilities are doing in Rice County keeping people safe.

Still no numbers have been reported from the Memorial Day weekend testing at the National Guard Armory facilities across the state including Faribault.

Purfeerst reported 1,401 people were tested in Faribault that weekend.  Just over 300 Saturday, around 500 Sunday and 574 Memorial Day.  She worked at the event and said a lot of people from outside Rice County did come to be tested.

No word on when the results will be reported from that testing in terms of the positives found out of the 1,401 people tested in Faribault.

Ackmann-Shaw did tell us one of the most asked questions of her has been when should you get tested if you have been in close contact with someone who tests positive. "Close contact really is defined as being next to someone within six feet for an hour or more.  An hour of time within six feet."

She added all of us need to watch ourselves for symptoms, "Including like fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills, headaches, muscle pain, sore throat or loss of taste or smell."  Those are some important things to be watching out for.