BISMARCK — The North Dakota Department of Health on Thursday, July 2, announced 43 new cases of COVID-19. It's the tenth day in a row active cases have climbed in North Dakota.

There are now 342 residents of the state known to be infected with the illness — a nearly 60% increase from June 22. North Dakota's pandemic-high number of active cases came May 21, when 670 residents were infected.

About 1.2% of the 3,625 test results announced Thursday came back positive.

Seventeen of the new cases came from Cass County, which includes Fargo and West Fargo. Of the 2,277 residents who once had the illness in the county, only 123 are currently infected.

Fourteen of the new cases came from Burleigh County, which encompasses Bismarck. The county has the second most known active cases in the state at 87 and has been growing as a hotspot for the illness over the last two weeks.

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The other 12 new cases Thursday came from Grand Forks, Cavalier, McHenry, Morton, Stark, Traill, Walsh and Wells counties.

The department says 80 North Dakotans have died from the illness, including 66 residents of Cass County. Fifty-six of the deaths have come in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.

Medical professionals listed COVID-19 as the official cause of death for 69 of the state's victims. Ten were determined to have died primarily because of another condition while infected with COVID-19, and one death record is still pending. The department also notes that nine people not included in the official death count were presumed to have died from COVID-19 but did not test positive while they were alive.

Gov. Doug Burgum said the state has the capacity to perform 5,000 tests per day, and he has urged residents to seek testing whether they have symptoms or not. In the last month, the state has begun offering free mass testing events in the state's biggest metro areas.

A total of 3,657 North Dakota residents have tested positive, but 3,235 have recovered. There are 19 residents hospitalized with the illness, down one from Wednesday.

The state has announced the results of 188,414 tests, but some residents have been tested more than once.

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