Minnesota officials: 113 of 160 COVID-19 deaths associated with long-term care facilities

Minnesota health officials say 113 of the 160 COVID-19 deaths in Minnesota are associated with long-term care facilities.

In a news conference Tuesday, Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said 14 of the state’s new deaths Tuesday are from long-term care facilities, continuing the trend that has existed since the beginning of the outbreak.

Officials, including MDH’s Kris Ehresmann, said caregivers and staff coming in and out of the facilities could be responsible for the spread.

“We cannot absolutely lock them down from the community,” Ehresmann said.

While long-term facilities make up the majority of deaths, the residents are a much smaller percentage of hospitalized patients, Malcolm said.

Minnesota Director of Health Regulation Michelle Larson said the department has started working with the State Emergency Operations Center to help find emergency staffing for overwhelmed long-term care facilities.

The department also announced it is working on a hotline for long-term care facilities.