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Minnesota News and Outreach – December 30, 2020


December 31, 2020

COVID-19 Vaccine Update

Minnesota is following federal recommendations to start COVID-19 vaccine distribution with the people who are most likely to get COVID-19 and those most at risk of serious complications. We are working with a wide range of partners to distribute the first small shipments of COVID-19 vaccines to health care workers and long-term care residents and staff in Phase 1a of vaccine distribution.

The limited initial supply of COVID-19 vaccine means there is not enough for everyone who needs it. As we continue to plan for the larger shipments of vaccine expected in the coming weeks and months, we must determine a process that ensures fair, equitable, and effective distribution of the vaccine. We will provide updates when vaccine is available to more people and how they can get it.

• Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Advisory Group

Minnesotans can learn more and provide feedback on how to continue progress toward the goal of distributing the initial supply of COVID-19 vaccine in a way that saves the most lives and puts us on a path to ending the crisis brought on by the pandemic as quickly as possible. The Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Advisory Group includes health care experts from across the state who review guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) about who should get the vaccine first and make detailed recommendations for how to apply the guidelines in Minnesota.

• COVID-19 Vaccine

Information on COVID-19 vaccine emergency use authorization, making safe and effective vaccines, why we need vaccines, who can get vaccines, and more.

• COVID-19 Vaccine Data

Data on COVID-19 vaccine provider registration, vaccine distribution, and vaccine administration.


Community Testing

In order to help prevent further spread of the virus, MDH has set up over 20 semi-permanent community testing sites statewide. These sites allow Minnesotans to get tested near where they live so they can make informed decisions to protect their families and communities.

Community testing is offered in the following locations across the state in January: Albert Lea, Anoka, Bloomington, Brooklyn Park, Burnsville, Crookston, Duluth, Hibbing, Hutchinson, Inver Grove Heights, MSP Airport, Mankato, Minneapolis, Moorhead, Morris, St. Cloud, St. Paul, Stillwater, Wadena, Winona, and Worthington.

Testing is open to anyone who believes they need a COVID-19 test, with or without insurance. Each site offers saliva testing at no cost to participants. You must not eat, drink, chew, or smoke anything for at least 30 minutes before starting a saliva test.

Visit COVID-19 Community Testing Sites to schedule an appointment. Note: All community testing sites will be closed Thursday, Dec. 31 and Friday, Jan. 1.


Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) Materials

We are adding new videos, print materials, and translated documents often. Check out the pages below to view, download, or print these resources.

Materials and Resources for COVID-19 Response

Videos for COVID-19 Response

The situation is changing rapidly. Visit Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) for the most up-to-date information and follow MDH on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram to stay informed.

What's New


Monoclonal Antibody Treatment

If you test positive for COVID-19 and are older or have another health condition that puts you at high risk of getting very sick, you may be eligible for treatment with a new therapy called a monoclonal antibody treatment.

Antibodies are proteins that people's bodies make to fight viruses, such as the virus that causes COVID-19. Antibodies made in a laboratory act a lot like natural antibodies to limit the amount of virus in your body. They are called monoclonal antibodies. These treatments are allowed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) while clinical studies continue to look at their usefulness and safety.

The treatment must be given as soon as possible after a positive test result. Call your health care provider or visit Monoclonal Antibody Treatment: Frequently Asked Questions for more information, including what is considered high-risk.


COVID-19 Stories of Community Outreach and Partnership

COVID-19 Stories of Community Outreach and Partnership highlight the efforts of our staff in collaboration with community partners during the COVID-19 response. Some stories provide insight into how this work is done, others discuss what challenges our teams face, but all of them recognize how COVID-19 has pushed MDH to try new strategies so we can fulfill our mission of protecting, maintaining, and improving the health of all Minnesotans.

The Power of Lived Experience: Community Outreach for Minnesota’s COVID-19 Testing

When COVID-19 arrived in Minnesota, testing opportunities were limited. Only people with symptoms could get tested at clinics and hospitals and everyone was asked for insurance. This left many Minnesotans without access to COVID-19 testing.

Seeing this deficit, the Governor’s Office and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) partnered with diagnostic testing companies and community organizations to open community testing sites all over the state. Community testing sites are located at nonclinical locations, often in trusted community spaces such as churches or community centers. People do not need to have symptoms to be tested, and they do not have to have insurance or show identification. For these reasons, community testing is considered “no barrier,” and helps ensure that COVID-19 testing is accessible to all Minnesotans.

Read more:

The Power of Lived Experience: Community Outreach for Minnesota’s COVID-19 Testing


Guidance and Resources


• Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Advisory Group

• COVID-19 Vaccine Data

• Get Tested for COVID-19 (PDF)

• Exposure Assessment for Critical Workers with Job-related Risk of COVID-19 (PDF)


• COVID-19 Vaccine

• Face Covering Requirements and Recommendations under Executive Order 20-81 and 20-103

• COVID-19 Public Pools under Executive Order 20-104 (PDF)

• Applies through Jan. 3, 2021

COVID-19 Youth and Adult Sports under Executive Order 20-103 (PDF)

o Effective Jan. 4, 2021

COVID-19 Sports Practice Guidance for Youth and Adults (PDF)

• Guidance for Vehicle Gatherings, Parades, and Drive-ins (PDF)

• Jails and Correctional Settings: Interim Guidance for Responding to Cases of Confirmed or Suspected COVID-19 (PDF)

• Frequently Asked Questions: Bars, Restaurants, and Other Places of Public Accommodation (PDF)

• 2020-2021 Planning Guide for Schools: Health Considerations for Navigating COVID-19 (PDF)

• What To Do When Notified of a Lab-Confirmed Case of COVID-19 in Child Care Settings or Youth Programs (PDF)

• Handling a Suspected or Confirmed Positive Case of COVID-19: Information for Schools (PDF)

• COVID-19 Decision Tree for People in Schools, Youth, and Child Care Programs (PDF)

• COVID-19 Attendance Guide for Parents and Families (PDF)

• Home Screening Tool for COVID-19 Symptoms (PDF)

• COVID-19 Sports Guidance for Higher Education (PDF)

• Guidance for COVID-19 Cases and Outbreaks in Higher Education (PDF)

• Isolation and Quarantine Quick Reference Guidance for Higher Education (PDF)

• Monoclonal Antibody Treatment: Frequently Asked Questions

• Holiday Guidance: Long-term Care Facilities and Executive Order 20-103 (PDF)

NOTE: As new Executive Orders and recommendations are issued, we will review and update the guidance and resources on our website accordingly. Look for an "Updated" date below guidance links to know when the resource was last revised.

Minnesota Helpline

For questions related to the COVID-19 pandemic

651-297-1304 or 1-800-657-3504

Monday-Friday: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.


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