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Morning headlines: Cass County records most active COVID-19 cases than ever before

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Here is your InForum Minute for Friday, Jan. 14.

Coronavirus
Transmission electron microscope image shows SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S. Virus particles are emerging from the surface of cells cultured in the lab. The spikes on the outer edge of the virus particles give coronaviruses their name, crown-like.
Photo courtesy of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease-Rocky Mountain Laboratories

FARGO — The spike in infections as the omicron wave strikes has pushed active cases in Cass County to a new record above the peak in November 2020 before vaccines were available.

Reported active cases in Cass County have reached 2,559, according to figures reported Thursday, Jan. 13, by the North Dakota Department of Health. That's nearly 50% higher than the case peak in November 2020 and far surpasses the 977-case apex during the recently passed delta wave.

North Dakota broke a statewide pandemic milestone Thursday by recording more than 2,600 new COVID-19 cases in one day. The state broke its previous one-day positive case high just the day before, and officials say the state is only in the beginning of a wave spurred by the highly contagious omicron variant. Full story here.

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North Dakota flu cases soar to over 25 times the number reported a year ago

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Boxes hold containers of the influenza virus vaccine Fluzone. Bob King / Forum News Service file photo

BISMARCK — The prevalence of influenza in North Dakota is spiking, and the number of people who tested positive last week has increased by more than three-fold in comparison to last month, according to the state health department.

Although each flu season is unpredictable, the substantial number of people testing positive for the flu is high for this time of year compared to a normal flu season.

A typical flu season runs from October through May, and last season was unusually mild largely due to COVID-19 mitigation strategies, such as social distancing and mask-wearing, which also curbed the spread of flu. Full story here.

Fargo native nominated for president's job at University of Pennsylvania

M. Elizabeth Magill
M. Elizabeth Magill
Special to The Forum

PHILADELPHIA — Fargo native M. Elizabeth Magill has been nominated to serve as the ninth president of the University of Pennsylvania.

Magill is currently executive vice president and provost of the University of Virginia, having served in that position since 2019.

She was the first woman to hold that job.

The executive committee of the University of Pennsylvania's Board of Trustees voted to nominate Magill as president of the university, and the full board will vote on her nomination in March.

If her nomination is approved, Magill will assume the job of president on July 1. Full story here.

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