BISMARCK — The North Dakota Department of Health on Wednesday, Jan. 13, reported two COVID-19 deaths and a slight drop in active cases.

The latest deaths came in a Rolette County woman in her 50s and a Stutsman County woman in her 60s.

The department says 1,357 North Dakotans have died from the illness since March. At least 817 of the state's deaths have come in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. There are 32 infected nursing home residents in the state.

The state has averaged just 1.7 COVID-19 deaths a day in January, way down from December.

The state health department reported a decrease of 14 active cases on Wednesday, bringing the total to 1,749. COVID-19 hospitalizations sit at 72, an increase of two over the previous day.

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The department reported 227 new cases on Wednesday, including:

  • 42 from Cass County, which includes Fargo.
  • 29 from Ward County, which includes Minot.
  • 26 from Burleigh County, which includes Bismarck.

About 3.3% of the residents tested as part of the latest batch received a positive result, and an average of 4.2% of those tested in the last two weeks got a positive result. Sixty-five of Wednesday's positives came off rapid tests, while the rest came off traditional tests.

As of Tuesday, more than 45,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine had been administered in North Dakota, and some health care workers have started receiving their second doses.

The state microbiology lab announced late Tuesday that a software malfunction had rendered inconclusive 181 positive COVID-19 tests taken between Dec. 25 and Jan. 8. The issue has since been resolved, the department said.

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