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Aitkin County asks residents to postpone non-essential business

COVID-19 has reached Minnesota. As more and more cases are identified each day, it is essential that Aitkin County and all the residents of Aitkin County do their part to slow the spread. This goes beyond the usual precautions of washing your hands, staying home when sick and covering your cough. This means social distancing and avoiding non-essential movement within the community.

At the time of this writing, Aitkin County will continue to be open for business. We ask that you consider postponing non-essential business. You may visit the county website at www.co.aitkin.mn.us . Many services can be completed online; or call 927-7276 if you have any questions about county services. Aitkin County staff have been asked to complete assessments, appointments, visits or other work over the phone when it is feasible. WIC clinics will continue, appointments will be provided via phone until futher notice.

Now is the time for your individual household to prepare for the spread of COVID-19. Create a household plan of action in case of illness in your household or disruptions of daily activities due to COVID – 19 in the community. Consider a two-week supply of prescription and over the counter medications, food and other essentials. Prepare to stay home for two weeks in the event that you or a household member becomes sick, even if you think it is a cold. This is one of the most important steps to slowing the spread of illness. Stay home if you are sick.

As a community, we all need to incoorperate social distancing. Avoid social gatherings of 10 or more people. If you are an older adult or someone with underlying health conditions, avoid crowds and stay home as much as possible. When in public, try to maintain a distance of about 6 feet of other people. Consider using drive through or delivery pharmacies. Consider grocery or meal delivery services. Remember to regularly call your neighbors to check in. If you are able, consider donating to the local food banks. Many families will find themselves needing these resources if employment is cut or if someone in the household becomes sick and needs to stay home.

If you believe that you have COVID-19 and can manage your symptoms at home, please do so. If you are experiencing respiratory symptoms that you feel need medical attendition, call your clinic before going in. If you have other non-emergency medical concerns, consider using a virtual/online doctor option, such as Doctor on Demand.

You can keep abreast of the COVID-19 situation by visiting CDC or MDH websites at

https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

 or call the MDH hotline at 651-201-3920, Monday – Friday 9 AM-4:30 PM.

For local information and outreach, look here and to the Aitkin County Public Health Education, Aitkin County Sheriff’s and Riverwood Healthcare Center’s Facebook pages. 

Brea Hamdorf, Disease Prevention & Control Public Health Nurse

Erin Melz, Public Health Supervisor