BISMARCK — The North Dakota Department of Health on Friday, Sept. 11, reported four additional COVID-19 deaths and 244 positive cases.

The deaths include a Burleigh County man in his 50s, two Burleigh County men in their 80s, and a Mountrail County woman in her 70s. Like the vast majority of North Dakota's COVID-19 deaths, all four had underlying health conditions.

Friday's additional deaths brings the state's overall death toll to 164 North Dakotans, including 84 residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.

There are now 2,343 North Dakotans known to be infected with the illness, with 64 residents hospitalized. Twenty-two of those 64 are in intensive care.

Burleigh and Morton counties continue to lead the state in the number of active COVID-19 cases with 587 residents infected. The two counties announced 48 new positive cases Friday.

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On Thursday, Bismarck Public Schools announced all of its elementary students would transition to full-time in-person learning on Sept. 29.

Grand Forks County reported the most new cases Friday with 65 positives. The county now has 311 residents known to be infected with the illness. The University of North Dakota in Grand Forks reported that 88 students, staff and faculty members have tested positive for COVID-19 as of late Friday morning. There are 267 members of the university community in quarantine.

Cass County, which encompasses Fargo and West Fargo, reported 42 new cases of COVID-19 and has 390 active cases. North Dakota State University in Fargo reported Friday that 139 students and staff had tested positive and 203 students are quarantined in university housing.

Eighteen new cases came from Williams County, which encompasses Williston. The county now has 179 active cases.

Sixteen of the new cases came from Ward County, which encompasses Minot. The county now has 127 active cases.

About 4.4% of the 5,597 residents tested as part of the latest batch received a positive result, but 8.3% of those tested for the first time got a positive result.

North Dakota does not report a seven-day rolling average for positivity rate as many other states do, but Forum News Service calculated the rate to be 10.6% for tests taken on previously untested residents.

Readers can reach reporter Michelle Griffith, a Report for America corps member, at

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