The Minnesota Department of Health continues to lead the effort for COVID-19 response statewide, and has the most up to date information, including resources, on their website (https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html). Their website is updated at 11am daily with an updated case count, which also includes a map of the counties affected. MDH has a hotline available from 7am-7pm for questions specific to COVID-19: 651-201-3920 or 1-800-657-3903.
County officials understand that currently, there are many unknowns, and that can cause stress among community members and families. A few resources, if you are, or someone you know is experiencing increased anxiety are provided:
- Minnesota Department of Health Document “Managing Stress and the Threat of COVID-19” can be found here: https://www.health.state.mn.us/communities/ep/behavioral/stress_covid19.pdf
- The Crisis Text Line is an anonymous text line, available 24/7. Opt in by texting MN to 741741.
Two important updates to help slow the spread of COVI-19 are as follows:
1) Community Mitigation Strategies: this document provides guidance for schools and childcare, assisted living facilities/senior living facilities/adult day programs, workplaces, community & faith-based organizations, and health care settings/healthcare providers: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/action.html. Please also note that those in our community who are 70+ and/or have underlying medical conditions are highly recommended to stay at home and to avoid social gatherings and travel.
2) School Closure (K-12): March 18-27th. This closure is to accommodate planning. A school and childcare specific hotline has also been set up (7am-7pm): 651-297-1304 or 1-800-657-3504. More information can be found here: https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/schools.html
The County is continuing to prepare and is working on measures to continue services to clients, and also protect employees. They are following the guidance from MDH, and existing plans, as they develop internal protocols for response. As of now, no county offices have been closed. The public seeking county services are encouraged to do as much online as possible and/or by phone ahead of an in-person visit. The public is also requested to post-pone any non-essential county business.
As a reminder, the best personal preparedness measures for protecting yourself, as well as preventing the spread of any illness, including COVID-10 include:
- Washing your hands with hot water and soap, often (at least 20 seconds of vigorous scrubbing!). If soap and water are not available, the next best option is to use hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol content).
- Covering your cough or sneeze (with a tissue or the inside of your elbow)
- Avoiding touching your face (COVID-19 is spread through droplets)
- Staying home if you are sick (ex – fever, productive cough, body aches, sore throat, etc.)
- Considering social distancing (recommended distance of 6 feet between you and others, no handshaking/hugging, etc.).
CDC is still not recommending the use of facemasks and/or gloves as a preventive measure for the general public. Check out CDC’s website for additional personal preparedness information! If you have developed respiratory illness symptoms, please contact your primary healthcare provider to discuss next steps.
Please continue to visit MDH’s website and the CDC’s website for the most up to date, accurate information and recommendations. Press releases will be added to Carlton County’s website homepage, under the Newsflash Section. If interested in being notified when a new release is added, please sign up here: http://www.co.carlton.mn.us/list.aspx.