Wilkin County Public Health has confirmed its first case of the novel coronavirus in the county on Thursday, March 26.
The Minnesota Department of Health has notified Wilkin County Public Health Officials of its first lab confirmed case of COVID-19 due to community spread. It was reported that the individual does not have severe symptoms and is at home, recovering well.
Due to the small size of Wilkin County, information regarding name, age, location or any other easily identifiable information of the individual will not be released due to privacy laws, officials said.
“We know that it was through community spread, meaning it spread through an unknown source in the community,” Director of Public Health Deb Jacobs said. “The state cannot find a link that would indicate it would be travel related.”
MDH is monitoring the individual and performing an investigation into those who the individual came into contact with. They are interviewing those who have come into contact with the individual waiting a certain amount days, identifying symptoms, telling those to watch for symptoms, possibly self-quarantine and contact their health care provider if there are any symptoms.
The county’s public health office will continue to educate and encourage the public to wash their hands, stay at home and practice social distancing.
The state of Minnesota has a current 346 confirmed cases, 31 current hospitalizations and two deaths as of Thursday. There have been approximately 12,950 completed tests.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is a United States law that provides privacy standards to protect patients’ medical records and other health information. The privacy rule is not set aside during an emergency and continues to protect all individual’s health privacy. The privacy rule is balanced to ensure appropriate disclosures of information necessary to treat a patient, protect a nation’s public health and for other critical purposes. Further information regarding HIPAA privacy and novel coronavirus at https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-professionals/privacy/index.html.
Latest updates from the MDH can be found at https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/index.html.