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Minnesota Legislature

Legislative News and Views - Rep. Jennifer Schultz (DFL)

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COVID-19 Update - November 19, 2020

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Dear Neighbors,

COVID-19 is spreading at an uncontrolled pace across our country and is wreaking havoc on Minnesota. Cases continue to increase, as is the number of COVID patients requiring a critical care bed, and hospitals are approaching capacity and running low on staff, putting enormous pressure on doctors and nurses. This pandemic has resulted in tragic consequences, and yesterday, Minnesota eclipsed 3,000 deaths. We need aggressive, decisive action to stop the virus from spreading, and last night, Governor Walz announced a number of new measures designed to get COVID under control throughout our communities.

Pausing for COVID

Many of the restrictions the governor announced are similar to those implemented this past spring:

  • Minnesotans are being asked to halt in-person social gatherings with individuals outside their household
  • Bars and restaurants are dialed back to take-out and delivery service only; gyms, fitness studios, entertainment venues, event spaces, and similar establishments will need to close
  • Adult and youth sports are paused
  • Retail businesses, salons, and places of worship may continue to operate with proper precautions in place.
  • Childcare remains open.
  • Schools will continue to operate under the Safe Learning Plan, which shifts between in-person, distance, and hybrid learning depending on the local conditions of the virus. All other current restrictions also remain in effect.

Beds

Our hospitals are approaching critical care bed capacity. Additionally, many providers are facing a shortage of health care workers. As a result, our dedicated doctors and nurses are facing grueling circumstances as they work around the clock to care for patients. To comprehend the gravity of this situation, I encourage you to watch this exchange between President-elect Joe Biden and Mary Turner, ICU nurse and president of the Minnesota Nurses Association. COVID-19 continues to be a challenge for those living and working in congregate care settings, and to protect older and vulnerable Minnesotans, we must stop the virus from spreading in the community at large.

I thank Governor Walz for looking out for the health and safety of Minnesotans and making these tough choices. No one wants to have to stay home during the holidays, but nothing is more important than protecting our loved ones’ health. Like all of us, I’m optimistic a vaccine is around the corner, but in the meantime, we all have to do our part to help contain this virus and keep our communities safe. Continue to wash your hands often, wear a mask around others, practice physical distancing, and get tested if you’re experiencing symptoms or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19. Here is a list of testing resources, including saliva testing daily at the DECC and options to receive a test at home.

Please continue to stay in touch. My email is rep.jennifer.schultz@house.mn and phone number is 651-296-2228. It’s an honor to represent you.

Sincerely,

Jen Schultz
State Representative