Minnesota Loosens Bar Rules Put in Place for the Coronavirus

Restaurant Seating

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota health officials on Thursday reported the second-highest number of daily COVID-19 hospital admissions, on the same day the state loosened regulations in bars and restaurants.

Updated guidelines permit as many as 10 people seated together in restaurants and event spaces, up from four or six if they were members of a single household. Live music will now be allowed inside establishments large enough to accommodate social distancing, the Minnesota Department of Health said.

Dancing and karaoke are still prohibited.

The new rules will boost indoor occupancy to 50%, with a maximum of 250 individuals. Maximum outdoor seating is also increased to 250 people.

Thursday’s health department update showed 98 new hospital admissions, the highest total since May. Average hospitalizations are at their highest point since June.

Officials confirmed 1,276 new positive virus tests, lifting the total to 107,922 cases since the pandemic began. The death toll stands at 2,107, including eight new fatalities.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

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