State Health Commissioner alerts Roseau County of high positivity rate of COVID-19: County leaders are asked to promote compliance with guidelines to reduce virus spread

Content Providers(s): CDC/ Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAMS Photo Credit: Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAMS

In a letter addressed to Roseau County Commissioners, local mayors and MN State Legislators, Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm asked for quick action to prevent COVID-19 spread in the County.

“Roseau County has a high rate of positive cases that indicate the spread of the virus in your community has reached a concerning level,“ said Commissioner Malcolm.

COVID-19 cases in Roseau County began surging in late October. Since the beginning of November, the County has suffered an average of 24 new cases per day. Many employers are feeling the effects of staffing shortages when each positive case must isolate along with all close contacts up to two weeks.

According to Roseau County Emergency Manager Sue Grafstrom, reports from area schools this week during a Roseau County COVID Stakeholder call indicated staff shortages have contributed to partial or full distant learning models at two area schools and are areas of concern for the remaining schools.”

Commissioner Malcolm requested that in the name of saving lives, elected officials reach out to local businesses, including bars and restaurants, to encourage compliance with masking recommendations and follow social distancing and gathering restrictions.

Rep. Dan Fabian who next week will help launch a County-wide campaign to control COVID-19, underscored the workforce shortages. He also noted the problems that Roseau County will face if the pandemic takes away the people we count on for emergency services, utilities, snow plowing and other essential services.

“We need to keep one another safe. We owe it to every citizen but especially to our own friends and family,” said Rep. Fabian.

“All prevention methods are imperfect on their own, but used together they slow the spread,” Fabian said. “Let’s do the right thing and keep our county safe.”

The “It’s Up to Me” campaign rolls out on Monday, November 16 and you can hear more from Dan on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram #RCUPTOME and local radio stations.

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