ROCHESTER, Minn. -- Cases and deaths from COVID-19 in Minnesota climbed again on Thursday, July 2, according to the Minnesota Department of Health, as the state reported 500 cases and 13 deaths.

The state reported one death each in Steele, Sherburne and Dakota counties, four in Ramsey County and six in Hennepin County. Eight of the 13 deaths were among residents of long-term care.

A total of 1,458 Minnesotans have now died of the virus.

As health officials look toward the holiday weekend with trepidation, cases appear to be rising in the state's mid-size and suburban communities, given ongoing elevations in Blue Earth, Carver, Scott, Olmsted and Stearns counties.

On Thursday Stearns County reported 25 cases, Blue Earth 21 cases, Olmsted 18 cases, and Carver and Scott each reported 13 cases. After several days below 100 cases, Hennepin County is climbing upward as well, with 161 cases.

The state reported 13,505 tests on Thursday.

ICU use continues to fall. The number of people in an ICU setting with COVID-19 fell by two beds to 123, while non-ICU hospitalization for the illness rose by 16 to 151.

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Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 hotline: 651-201-3920.

COVID-19 discrimination hotline: 833-454-0148

Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 website: Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) website.