Minnesota, Wisconsin added to New York's travel advisory requiring travelers to quarantine when they visit

Minnesota and Wisconsin have been added to the list of states included in New York’s travel advisory requiring travelers to quarantine for 14 days when they visit.  

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that the travel advisory for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut has been expanded to include 22 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Florida, George, Iowa, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Mexico, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin. 

The governors of the three states—New York, New Jersey and Connecticut—jointly issued the initial travel advisory in late June for anyone returning from travel to states that have a significant degree of community-wide spread of COVID-19. 

The criteria for which travelers should quarantine is those coming from states with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents over a 7-day rolling average or a state with a 10 percent or higher positivity rate over a 7-day rolling average. On a rolling seven-day average, 4.7 percent of COVID-19 tests in Minnesota are coming back positive, but due to a spike in new cases these past few days, the state is at 10.23 cases per 100,000 people during that same 7-day period. 

Dr. George Morris, the COVID-19 incident commander for CentraCare, says Minnesotans should be vigilant to stop the spread and get Minnesota’s numbers back to some of the lowest in the country.

"If we could learn the lessons of New York without having to go through the catastrophe that they have, that’s where I think we could get back to under control, excel above average and really be a good Minnesota state of health," he said.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz responded to the new restrictions from New York on travelers from Minnesota Tuesday, saying state-by-state quarantines reflect a “50-state strategy” in the absence of a federal strategy from the Trump administration. 

At a press conference, Walz said his administration has looked at New York-style quarantines for incoming travelers, but “we’ve not seen a lot [of cases] come in that way.” He said most of Minnesota’s cases are now the result of community transition. 

According to the Minnesota Department of Health, New York, Connecticut and New Jersey use the CDC COVID tracker to make their determinations. This tracker goes by when a case is reported rather than when the specimen is collected, which is how MDH shows its data. Following the three states' announcement, MDH staff had to review its data.

"Data presentation issues aside, the bottom line is that Minnesota is seeing an uptick in COVID-19 cases and we must all do our part to slow the spread if we want to avoid additional cases and the implications,” read a statement in part from MDH.