Coronavirus In Minnesota: Congressional Delegation Urges Minnesotans Not To Downplay The Outbreak
Washington, DC, March 18, 2020 | WCCO Channel 4
Minnesota’s Congressional Delegation is urging the state’s residents not to downplay the severity of the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, adding that they should follow guidelines from public health officials.
In a letter Wednesday, both Democratic and Republican lawmakers, from Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D) to Reps. Tom Emmer (R-6th District) and Ilhan Omar (D-5th District), said that everyone’s top priority at this time should be to “flatten the curve” of the virus’ spread.
“Regardless of your age or health, we all have a responsibility to follow these guidelines to protect our loved ones and neighbors,” the letter said.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that people should wash their hands often, put distance between themselves and others, and stay home if feeling sick.
Additionally, President Donald Trump has called for Americans to avoid being in groups of more than 10 people.
The Minnesota lawmakers also called for Minnesotans not to discount the severity of the crisis, which has led to the closures of schools, restaurants, salons, concert venues, and even the northern border with Canada.
“The rapidly changing nature of this pandemic means we all need to stay informed and communicate with each other,” the delegation wrote. “Misinformation…only serves to hurt our collective response to this crisis.”
So far in Minnesota, 77 people have tested positive for COVID-19.
While most who get the disease have mild symptoms, the virus can be deadly for the elderly and those with underlying health issues.
According to the Minnesota Department of Health, healthy people with symptoms should self-quarantine for seven days, while at risk people with symptoms should call their health care provider.
Below is the full letter from the congressional delegation:
Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith, and Representatives Jim Hagedorn (MN-01), Angie Craig (MN-02), Dean Phillips (MN-03), Betty McCollum (MN-04), Ilhan Omar (MN-05), Tom Emmer (MN-06), Collin Peterson (MN-07), and Pete Stauber (MN-08) wrote:
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to unfold, we – the Minnesota Congressional Delegation – would like to speak to all Minnesotans with one unified voice. Over the past few weeks, we have watched as this crisis has grown exponentially. So much has changed quickly, and many Americans are wondering where to find information they can trust to keep themselves and their loved ones safe. We know many families are facing anxiety and fear – and that is why we have decided to write to you together.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is a rare event that is reshaping our society. We all need to follow the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health; additionally, the President has called for Americans to avoid being in groups of more than ten people. We know that by working together and using best practices like social distancing, we can help to “flatten the curve” of COVID-19. This must be our first priority. To be clear: Regardless of your age or health, we all have a responsibility to follow these guidelines to protect our loved ones and neighbors.
The rapidly changing nature of this pandemic means we all need to stay informed and communicate with each other. Misinformation – through the use of scare tactics or by underplaying the severity of the situation – only serves to hurt our collective response to this crisis. We encourage all Minnesotans to stay informed as well. See below for helpful resources.
We extend our sincere gratitude and thanks to all of the doctors, nurses, hospital staff and the Minnesota Hospital Association, first responders, and countless other frontline health workers who are working tirelessly to keep us all safe. We will continue to work with you and collaborate with federal agencies, the Governor’s Office, local and Tribal governments, as well as the medical community to ensure you have the resources needed to combat this pandemic and care for your patients.
These are unprecedented times, and more changes are likely in the days and weeks ahead as we take on COVID-19. But as our nation has shown countless times before, no challenge is too great for America to overcome. We will get through this too – together.