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UPDATED St. Louis County confirms 2nd COVID-19 case Walz enters self-quarantine


St. Louis County confirms 2nd COVID-19 case; Walz enters self-quarantine

 A second case of COVID-19 was confirmed Monday in St. Louis County as state totals rose sharply to 235, according to data from the Minnesota Health Department.

 The numbers were released about an hour after Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz announced that he entered self-quarantine for 14 days after coming into contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.

 Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan said her brother Ron died after contracting COVID-19 in Tennessee.

 U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar also stated her husband, John Bessler, tested positive for the coronavirus.

UPDATED St. Louis County confirms 2nd COVID-19 case Walz enters self-quarantine.

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has confirmed the second presumptive case of COVID-19 (coronavirus) in St. Louis County. The individual is a woman in her early 60s who is currently recovering at home. Her infection is linked to domestic travel, and not the result of community transmission. The woman was tested on March 19. It is believed she has had contact only with members of her immediate household, and they have been asked to quarantine themselves for 14 days from their exposure date and will be monitored for fever and respiratory symptoms.


St. Louis County Public Health has not been asked to provide essential services.


"We are encouraged to hear that this again is a travel-connected case, and not community transmission," said County Board Chair Mike Jugovich, "But we also recognize it is likely only a matter of time, and that is why we continue to emphasize the preventive recommendations to all."


"People are asking for more specific information such as what part of our large county these cases are in, saying they'd take different precautions based on the location," said Amy Westbrook, St. Louis County Public Health Division Director. "We are following MDH guidelines. My advice is people should act as if there is a confirmed case right in their neighborhood. There is limited testing available, so we have to assume there are more cases in our midst, and we need everyone's cooperation on containing the spread."


Preventative steps that everyone should be taking include:

  • Stay home if sick
  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water or use hand sanitizer
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow
  • Avoid touching mouth and face
  • Practice general good health behaviors, including staying hydrated and well-rested

In a majority of cases, COVID-19 causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia.


Anyone with clinical questions about the COVID-19 virus, such as identifying symptoms or whether testing is needed, can call Essentia Health at 1-833-494-0836; or St. Luke's at 218-249-4200. Non-clinical questions, such as preventative steps to take or anything travel-related, can be directed to the St. Louis County Public Health information line at 218-625-3600 or the Minnesota Department of Health at 651-201-3920. 


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