Coronavirus Updates


The Minnesota Department of Health coronavirus hotline is 651-201-3920. It is staffed 7am-7pm.

Emergency Resources available in Brown County: https:

Tuesday Press Conference March 31

Updated March 31, 2020

Total approximate number of completed tests: 19,780

Total approximate number of completed tests from the MDH Public Health Lab: 8,104
Total approximate number of completed tests from external laboratories: 11,676

Minnesota Case Information

Total positive: 629
Patients who no longer need to be isolated: 288
Deaths: 12

Total cases requiring hospitalization: 112
Hospitalized as of today: 56
Hospitalized in ICU as of today: 26

Age Range for confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota: Age range, number positive: 0 – 5 years, 3 6 – 19 years, 17 20 – 44 years, 277 45 – 64 years, 209 65+ years, 123
Median Age Age Range
All cases 46 5 months – 104 years
Non-hospitalized cases 42 5 months – 104 years
Hospitalized cases 63 6 – 95 years
Hospitalized cases in ICU 62 33 – 95 years
Deaths 86 58 – 95 years

Gender: 52% female, 48% male, 0% other

Cases by County of Residence

County of residence is confirmed during the case interview. At the time of this posting not all interviews have been completed. The data on this map may not equal the total number of reported positive cases.

County Cases
Anoka 23
Beltrami 4
Benton 1
Big Stone 1
Blue Earth 9
Brown 2
Carlton 1
Carver 10
Cass 1
Chisago 3
Clay 6
Clearwater 2
Cottonwood 2
Dakota 47
Dodge 8
Douglas 1
Faribault 2
Fillmore 8
Goodhue 3
Hennepin 204
Isanti 2
Itasca 1
Jackson 1
Kandiyohi 2
Lac qui Parle 1
Le Sueur 15
Lincoln 1
Lyon 1
Mahnomen 1
Martin 25
Meeker 1
Mower 13
Nicollet 3
Olmsted 53
Otter Tail 1
Ramsey 56
Renville 1
Rice 3
Scott 10
Sherburne 8
Sibley 1
St. Louis 12
Stearns 5
Steele 6
Traverse 2
Wabasha 6
Waseca 3
Washington 39
Watonwan 1
Wilkin 1
Winona 10
Wright 6

Governor Walz Monday Press Conference March 30

The New Ulm Police Department and Brown County Sheriff’s Office have received several calls and inquiries about enforcement procedures involving Executive Order 20-20 that has been recently issued by Governor Walz on March 25 and is effective from March 27, 2020 at 11:59 pm through Friday, April 10, 2020 at 5:00 pm. The Executive Order’s primary focus is consistent with a growing nationwide effort to contain the spread of COVID-19 by strongly encouraging Minnesota residents to “Stay at Home” and practice social distancing with other people.

All law enforcement agencies within Minnesota are required to enforce the Executive Order and violations are considered a misdemeanor. Our goals as law enforcement remains the same, to deter crime, attempt to deter motor vehicle crashes and keep our roadways and public safe. This Executive Order is certainly part of our responsibilities and will be diligently enforced; however, law enforcement will be following the same enforcement procedures as in the past, which requires meeting certain levels of proof to execute action

To address three of the most common questions that have been presented to law enforcement concerning the Executive Order:

1. Can I travel? Answer: Yes. The order permits people to travel for many reason to include “drive for pleasure”.

2. Do we need documentation of being an essential / critical employee? Answer: No. This is not required, but having some type of form or business Identification Card might be helpful for employees to better define their job responsibility. We recommend that there is some type of contact information for the officer to follow up on. Usually, most employers have been recommending employees use their supervisor or a representative from Human Resources for contact inquires.

3. Can we be outside? Answer: Yes. Governor Walz encouraged people to be active and his order allows residents to go for a walk, go jogging, ride their bicycle, visit public parks / public recreation lands, go for a car ride or go hunting and fishing, just observe six foot social distancing rule while doing so.

For details and exceptions please visit

Redwood Hospital Foundation and

Rice Health Foundation and Develop Emergency Fund

Willmar, Minn. – Carris Health appreciates the individuals, organizations, and community groups who are coming forward to offer support in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In an effort to direct funds to areas of need locally during the COVID-19 outbreak, Rice Health Foundation and Redwood Hospital Foundation have established a COVID-19 Emergency Fund to receive monetary donations for Carris Health locations. Gifts to this fund will be used to:

• Purchase COVID-19 supplies and medical equipment.
• Provide meals for staff who remain on campus to provide care.
• Meet other high priority needs identified to support the direct care of COVID-19 patients and others in our community.

Make your gifts online to the COVID-19 Emergency Fund (Carris Health – Rice Memorial Hospital or Carris Health – Redwood Hospital) or mail a check designated for COVID-19 to:

• Rice Health Foundation, 301 Becker Ave SW, Willmar, MN 56201
• Redwood Hospital Foundation, 100 Fallwood Rd, Redwood Falls, MN 56283

Governor Walz Press Conference Friday, March 27

Blue Earth County Update- March 27

Brown County Public Health Supervisor Jaimee Brand-March 27

New Ulm School Superintendent Jeff Bertrang on “Distance Learning”. He was interviewed Friday morning on KNUJ.

Governor Walz Press Conference

Congressman Jim Hagedorn on the Federal Response to COVID-19 and the Economic Stimulus Package

Governor Walz Issues Stay at Home Order for Minnesotans
Executive order directs Minnesotans to limit movement to slow the spread of COVID-19
March 25, 2020

[ST. PAUL, MN] – To slow the spread of COVID-19 across the state, Governor Tim Walz today signed Executive Order 20-20 directing Minnesotans to stay at home and limit movements outside of their home beyond essential needs. This order takes effect at 11:59pm on Friday, March 27 and ends at 5:00pm on Friday, April 10.

“We must take bold action to save the lives of Minnesotans,” said Governor Walz. “Having served as a Command Sergeant Major in the Army National Guard, I know the importance of having a plan. While the virus will still be here when this order ends, this action will slow the spread of COVID-19 and give Minnesota time to ready for battle.”

Modeling released today by the Minnesota Department of Health and University of Minnesota predicts that more than 70,000 Minnesotans could die from COVID-19 if we take no action. The Governor’s two-week order to stay home is forecasted to significantly slow the spread of COVID-19 and allow the state time to make key preparations for the pandemic. These preparations include building hospital capacity, increasing access to life-saving equipment like ventilators, increasing testing, planning for how to care for vulnerable populations, and assessing public health data to determine which community mitigation strategies are most effective.

“We will work with our world-renowned health care sector, cutting-edge manufacturers, innovative business community, and strong-spirited Minnesotans across the state to tackle this virus head on,” Governor Walz continued. “These are trying times. But we are Minnesotans. We see challenges—and we tackle them. No matter how daunting the challenge; no matter how dark the times; Minnesota has always risen up—by coming together. If we unite as One Minnesota, we will save lives.”

Minnesotans may leave their residences only to perform any of the following activities, and while doing so, they should practice social distancing:

Health and safety activities, such as obtaining emergency services or medical supplies
Outdoor activities, such as walking, hiking, running, biking, hunting, or fishing
Necessary Supplies and Services, such as getting groceries, gasoline, or carry-out
Essential and interstate travel, such as returning to a home from outside this state
Care of others, such as caring for a family member, friend, or pet in another household
Displacement, such as moving between emergency shelters if you are without a home
Relocation to ensure safety, such as relocating to a different location if your home has been unsafe due to domestic violence, sanitation, or essential operations reasons
Tribal activities and lands, such as activities by members within the boundaries of their tribal reservation.
Workers who work in critical sectors during this time are exempt from the stay at home order. These exemptions are based on federal guidance from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security with some Minnesota-specific additions. This includes, but is not limited to, jobs in:

Healthcare and public health;
Law enforcement, public safety, and first responders;
Emergency shelters, congregate living facilities, drop-in centers;
Child care;
Food and agriculture;
News media;
Water and wastewater; and
Critical manufacturing.

The Governor also today issued executive orders extending the closure of bars, restaurants, and other public accommodations set forth in Executive Orders 20-04 and 20-08 until May 1, 2020 at 5:00 pm and authorizing the Commissioner of Education to implement a Distance Learning Period for Minnesota’s students beginning on March 30 through May 4, 2020.

The Governor’s Executive Orders will have the full force and effect of law upon approval by the Executive Council.

Updates on the COVID-19 pandemic in Minnesota are available here. Frequently asked questions are available here.

Governor Walz Wednesday afternoon Press Conference March 25

Sleepy Eye Medical Center's Dr. John Pelzel with Craig Hansen Wednesday morning March 25

DEED released their Small Business Emergency Loan fund applications. Please review the requirements below.
Attached is the MN DEED application and approved lenders list.


In order to be eligible for a Small Business Emergency Loan, businesses must be able to demonstrate that it was directly and adversely affected by the conditions that precipitated the emergency declaration as noted in Executive Orders 20-04 and 20-08.
The following businesses are noted in those Executive Orders:

Restaurants, food courts, cafes, coffeehouses, and other places of public accommodation offering food or beverage for on-premises consumption, excluding institutional or in-house food cafeterias that serve residents, employees, and clients of businesses, child care facilities, hospitals, and longterm care facilities.
Bars, taverns, brew pubs, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, tasting rooms, clubs, and other places of public accommodation offering alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption.
Hookah bars, cigar bars, and vaping lounges offering their products for onpremises consumption.
Theaters, cinemas, indoor and outdoor performance venues, and museums.
Gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, indoor sports facilities, indoor exercise facilities, exercise studios, and spas tanning establishments, body art establishments, tattoo parlors, piercing parlors, businesses offering massage therapy or similar body work, spas, salons, nail salons, cosmetology salons, esthetician salons, advanced practice esthetician salons, eyelash salons, and barber shops. This includes, but is not limited to, all salons and shops licensed by the Minnesota Board of Cosmetologist Examiners and the Minnesota Board of Barber Examiners.
Amusement parks, arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, indoor climbing facilities, skating rinks, trampoline parks, and other similar recreational or entertainment facilities.
Country clubs, golf clubs, boating or yacht clubs, sports or athletic clubs, and dining clubs.

To qualify, the businesses must:

Be current on financial obligations as of March 1, 2020
Be an existing small business (whatever the form of their organization)
Have been operating in Minnesota for at least one year
Be willing to provide collateral or personal guarantee for at least 20% of loan
Have been denied credit by a lender and have sought or be in the process of seeking, SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance.
Pay-off the emergency loan if financing is received subsequent to loan approval.

Loans cannot be provided to businesses that:

Derive income from passive investments without operational ties to operating businesses
Generate any part of its income from gambling or adult-oriented activities
Have no current or historical financial statements

As Minnesota copes with the COVID-19 peacetime emergency, the MN Department of
Revenue (MDR) announced that the individual income tax filing deadline has been extended to July
15. This announcement follows the federal tax guidelines which have also extended to July 15. The
extension is available to everyone, and there is no penalty or interest for taking advantage of the

The United Way of the Brown County Area’s offices are temporarily closed to the public, but staff is still working and can be reached via email at: or calling: 507-354-6512
If you are in need of financial, or basic need assistance, COVID 19 Emergency Resources for Brown County can be found through the United Way website and Facebook page:

United Way’s Project Lunchbox weekend food program will still be delivering weekend food packages to New Ulm District schools. Meals can be picked up on Thursday or Friday of each week at the school your child attends.

If your child is facing food sensitivity in your home, please go to the link below, print off the Project Lunch box signup, mail or email it to the United Way, (PO BOX 476, New Ulm, MN 56073) or drop off at your child’s school. During this emergency, the United Way is waiving the income restrictions for this program and anyone who feels they need it can sign up.

The United Way, with the Help of Twin River Design, has established a COVID 19 Emergency Fund. All funds donated to the United Way, through Tip Jar, during the social distancing and closure of our local businesses due to COVID 19 will go to Brown County non-profits that provide relief and assistance to individuals in the areas of health and basic needs. It is the goal of Twin River Design and the United Way to ensure that every person is connected to the resources they need, when they need them, and that we stay HEALTHY and UNITED!

To make a donation, please go to our website, and click on the COVID 19 Fund button in the upper right hand corner, or follow the direct link below:

As Minnesota dentists follow a mandate by the Governor’s Office to temporarily suspend non-emergent and elective procedures in order to lessen transmission of COVID-19, many dentists remain available to provide emergency care – and they urge people to seek that care by contacting a dentist if they need it.experiencing any of the following symptoms, it may constitute an emergency:
Severe, persistent toothache. If you feel a toothache has become overwhelming and in need of immediate relief, you should seek care from a dentist as soon as possible. Otherwise, symptoms could worsen and other complications could arise.
Tooth knocked out or loose. Timing is essential when a tooth has been knocked out. The faster you are able to see a dentist, the more likely they will be able to save your natural tooth. A tooth that has become suddenly loose is typical for children, but can be a major problem for adults as it could indicate an underlying disease.
Broken tooth. A broken tooth accompanied by severe pain requires emergency attention. This not only causes tooth pain and facial swelling, it can also leave you more vulnerable to bacteria and infection that can threaten overall health. If a tooth is slightly chipped or broken and presents no significant pain, treatment can be postponed until regular care can be administered.
Dental abscess (tooth infection). If you suspect a dental abscess, seek immediate treatment. Infections could become life-threatening when they spread throughout the body or close your airway. This type of infection may cause significant discomfort that can radiate into your jaw, ear or neck and may cause headaches. Common symptoms include swelling of your mouth or face, fever, a buildup of pus, a foul taste in your mouth and swollen glands.For more information about your oral health during the coronavirus pandemic, visit the American Dental Association’s public awareness website at

LeSueur County confirmed first of COVID-19.

Governor Walz Friday Press Conference March 20

Update from New Ulm Medical Center’s Dr. Bryana Andert Friday, March 20.

Governor Walz news conference March 18


Sleepy Eye Medical Center’s Dr. John Pelzel visits with Craig Hansen.

Brown County Public Health’s Karen Moritz and Jaimee Brand with COVID-19 local update as of 9:45am Wednesday, March 18.

Brown County Veterans Services Officer Greg Peterson shares information from his office as we deal with COVID-19.

President and CEO of the New Ulm Area Chamber of Commerce Michael Looft- Covid-19 impact on Local Businesses

Cedar Mountain Superintendent Rob Brandl Explains how schools will be educating students during this health crisis.

Shannon Schutz of Schutz Family Foods in Sleepy Eye talking about supplies on Tuesday morning

New Ulm Medical Center’s Dr. Bryana Andert interview on KNUJ Monday afternoon

Helpful Links:

Strategies to Slow the Spread of COVID-19 in Minnesota-MN Department of Health recommends postponing or canceling certain events
-Large events of 250 or more people
-Smaller events that are held in venues that do no allow social distancing of 6 feet per person
– Events where the majority of participants are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19 should be limited to no more than 10 people. This includes gathering at retirement facilities, assisted living facilities, developmental homes, and health support groupsRC Hospital and Clinic will initiate a drive-thru screening station at the Olivia location starting Tuesday morning, March 17, at 8am. One patient in Renville County has tested positive for Covid-19. The patient is recovering at home and the situation appears to be travel related.-New Ulm Emergency Food Shelf has this message: Participants receiving food: Stay home if you are sick or are experiencing any of the symptoms of the coronavirus. One person per family. Please leave all boxes and bags at home, food shelf will provide prepackaged boxes or bags. Follow instructions posted outside the building when you arrive.
Volunteers: Stay home if you are sick or are experiencing any symptoms of the coronavirus, call 507-354-7668 to let them know you are staying home. If you are working, enter through the garage and wash hands thoroughly before handling any food.-Governor Tim Walz signed an executive order Sunday morning which authorizes the temporary closure of Minnesota K-12 schools starting Wednesday effective until March 27. A message from New Ulm Superintendent Jeff Bertrang Sunday morning says that New Ulm schools will be in regular session Monday and Tuesday to allow parents to coordinate daycare options and for staff to work with students to prepare for the closure. The message also says parents have the option to keep their students at home if they feel it is necessary. Parents are asked to contact the school office if they plan to do so.
Governor Walz Friday,March 13, Press Conference

minnesota department of health

Health officials announce new community-level strategies to slow COVID-19 in Minnesota

With community transmission likely in near future, now is the time for all to act

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) today announced a series of community-level strategies to help slow the spread of novel coronavirus in Minnesota communities. With a total of 14 cases of travel-associated COVID-19 now confirmed in Minnesota, health officials urge swift action to limit the spread of the infection and reduce its impacts on our communities and our health care system.

The broad set of recommendations will remain in place until further notice, and touch on many aspects of society, including families, faith-based organizations, employers, assisted living facilities, schools and health care settings. Each strategy is designed to make person-to-person transmission less likely by reducing the close-contact interactions (interactions with others within 6 feet for 10 minutes or more) that tend to result in passing along the illness.

The full set of recommendations is available on the MDH Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) website. Key items on the list include:

  • Event organizers cancelling or postponing gatherings with 250 or more people, including concerts, conferences, professional and amateur performances or sporting events.
  • Event organizers cancelling or postponing smaller events (those with less than 250 people) that are held in settings that do not allow social distancing of 6 feet per person.
  • Event organizers limiting attendance to no more than 10 people for events where the majority of participants are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
  • People and families at higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness staying at home and avoiding gatherings or other situations of potential exposures, including travel.
  • Employers making telework arrangements for workers whose duties can be done remotely.
  • Employers staggering work schedules and limiting non-essential work travel.
  • Health care facilities and assisted-living facilities more strictly limiting visitors.
  • Faith-based organizations offering video or audio events.
  • Hospitals and other health care facilities implementing triage before entering facilities (for example, parking lot triage, phone triage, and telemedicine to limit unnecessary visits).

The Minnesota recommendations include school-specific guidance for limiting close-contact interactions. However, consistent with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), MDH has not recommended that K-12 schools close unless specifically advised to do so by health officials. However, as the situation evolves there may be points where specific or broad closures would be ordered. Parents of children and teens with underlying health conditions should consider distance learning as a precaution.

Shopping for groceries and other items is not affected by these recommendations, although it is a good idea to limit close contact when doing so – and people who are sick should not be shopping or using transit. They should stay home until they recover.

The recommendations to avoid mass gatherings do not pertain to normal operations of airports, bus and train stations, medical facilities, libraries, shopping malls and centers, or other spaces where 100 or more people may be in transit. Even so, people in high-risk categories (the elderly and those with underlying medical conditions) should consider limiting such activities.

According to Minnesota Commissioner of Health Jan Malcolm, these recommendations show that every Minnesota resident and organization has an important role to play in protecting our state from the risks of this disease.

“We know these strategies will impact the lives of all Minnesotans, but we are hopeful we can reduce the impacts of this outbreak by working together,” Commissioner Malcolm said. “All Minnesotans share the risks and the responsibilities now.”

“For everyone, the responsibility first and foremost is to stay home when you are sick,” Commissioner Malcolm said. “I want to make it clear that this applies to everyone – no exceptions during a serious outbreak like this. For communities and organizations, the responsibility means making temporary adjustments to events, operations and activities to help make person-to-person transmission less likely.”

Since the outbreak started in December 2019, more than 134,000 cases and 4,967 deaths have been reported worldwide. That includes 1,701 U.S. cases and 40 deaths as of this morning.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is spread primarily by respiratory droplets when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza spreads. It can also spread when people touch contaminated surfaces and then touch their eyes, nose or mouth. More information can be found on MDH’s Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) website. MDH has set up a COVID-19 public hotline that is open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The hotline number is 651-201-3920.

Interview with Brown County Public Health on Thursday, March 12