Public Health Supporters:

Looking for the latest data on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak? A reminder to get news from reliable, trustworthy sources and avoid the "infodemic" of misinformation. Help us elevate good public health messages by sharing these resources as widely as possible. Local, national, and global recommended sources are listed below. 

Minnesota Resources

Minnesota Department of Health (MDH)

  • MDH public hotlines

    School and child care questions: 1-800-657-3504

    Health questions: 651-201-3920 or 1-800-657-3903

    Discrimination helpline: 1-833-454-0148

COVID19 map
This information is also available on the Minnesota Department of Health Situation Update for Coronavirus Disease 2019 webpage, which is updated daily at 11 a.m. with data current as of 4 p.m. the previous day.

COVID-19 Testing

For the most up-to-date information, please visit Minnesota Department of Health's webpage:

Testing options & locations

Who should get tested during Dial Back, Minnesota
Waiting for your test results
Test types and data

Know before you go

The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act requires that COVID-19 testing is provided at no cost to the patient. This applies to all health insurance coverage in Minnesota. It is important to know that this applies to the test only. Office visits are not covered through the CARES Act. Some insurance carriers have agreed to waive copays and deductibles for in-network visits associated with the COVID-19 test.

Check with your health insurance to find out what will be covered and what is in network. If you have questions, call your insurance company prior to getting tested. If you don't have a doctor or health care provider, or are uninsured, contact a federally qualified Community Health Center.

Waiting for test results

If you or a loved one gets tested, results will come from the testing clinic or provider. Test results generally take 24-48 hours. If you have a fever and/or cough, shortness of breath or other symptoms while waiting for results, you should stay home and away from others as much as possible. 
Family members and close contacts of people who have tested positive should limit their activities in public for 14 days and monitor for symptoms. Someone from the Minnesota Department of Health or the county where you live will call you if you’ve tested positive.


Download the free COVIDaware MN app to get notified if you have been near someone who tests positive for COVID-19.

Updated Quarantine Guidance from MDH - 12/9/20

For months, CDC had recommended a quarantine period of 14 days for people exposed to someone with COVID-19, also known as close contacts. Quarantine is one of several public health tools used to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 to others. This guidance was based on evidence showing that close contacts can develop a COVID-19 infection as many as 14 days after being exposed.

Last week, CDC announced an update to that long-standing guidance that includes options for 10-day or seven-day quarantines under certain conditions. After reviewing the available information, we updated our guidance to integrate these new recommendations.

The safest option is to stay away from others for 14 days.

  • In certain situations, you may end your quarantine after 10 days, or after seven days with a negative COVID-19 test result.
  • You cannot end your quarantine before seven days for any reason.
  • Some work settings, like health care, have different rules about quarantine. Check with your employer.

For more information visit MDH's Close Contacts and Tracing: COVID-19

Resources for Underserved Communities

Low Income Energy Assistance Program Information shared by the U of MN Extension's Sustainable partnership. If you have any questions please contact Joel Haskar at haska004@umn.ed.

Since Covid-19, there have been some big changes in the federal Low Income Energy Assistance Program(LIHEAP) that helps people pay their energy bills or get a broken furnace repaired/replaced:

  • The application deadline has been extended to July 1
  • Income eligibility is based on the last month only (not a whole year) -- this to help the newly unemployed
  • The annual crisis maximum has increased to $1200 instead of $600

You will also see in the eap-flier-english that there has been special attention paid to make sure people feel safe about applying regarding citizenship status. Translations in Hmong, Spanish & Somali available.

Sometimes LIHEAP runs out of money, but it sounds like more money has been pumped into the system AND getting signed up makes people eligible for some enhanced utility programming/ rebates and other CAP programming (Head Start etc.). Bottomline is we want people to sign up. 

Discrimination Helpline

Avoid stigma or showing prejudice to Minnesotans of Asian descent or assuming someone of Asian descent is more likely to have COVID-19. Witness or experience discrimination? Call the helpline at 1-833-454-0148.

Resources like the Minnesota Crisis Response Line (952-891-7171) and the National Domestic Violence Hotline (1-800-799-7233) are also available for those in need.

COVID-19 Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities

CDC resource updated 12/10/20: Why are some racial and ethnic minority groups disproportionately affected by COVID-19?

Mental Health Resources

First Responder Toolkit app - released 5/14/20

The First Responder Toolkit app aids those deployed to emergency response events in maintaining their own physical, emotional, and social well-being.

In the future it will provide checklists for before, during, and after deployment that help responders pack for deployment, take care of daily needs, maintain important relationships, reflect on experiences, and more.

A variety of responders will find this app useful to help manage their self care while working in demanding situations, when caring for oneself is essential in order to help and care for others.

APHA sounds alarm over mental health in midst of COVID-19 pandemicpress release May 12, 2020

National/World Resources

American Public Health Association

  • COVID-19 page on for public health professionals that links to APHA resources as well as those from such trusted sources as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.

Centers for Disease Control

World Health Organization

Homemade household cleaners - courtesy of Dakota County Public Health
COVID-19: Cleaning and disinfecting alternatives

Use the following suggestions for preventive cleaning against COVID-19 if everyday supplies, such as cleaning wipes or cleaning sprays, run out.

How to make homemade disinfectant with bleach:

▪ Mix 5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) of bleach per gallon of water; or 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of water.
▪ Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application and proper ventilation.
▪ Do not use if bleach product is past its expiration date.
▪ Never mix bleach with ammonia or other household cleaners.

How to make homemade disinfectant with rubbing alcohol:

▪ Mix 2 parts rubbing alcohol to 1 part water in a spray bottle.
▪ Wear disposable gloves when cleaning and disinfecting surfaces.
▪ Discard gloves after use, or, if reusable gloves are used, they should be dedicated only for cleaning and disinfecting surfaces for COVID-19 and no other purposes.
▪ Clean hands immediately after gloves are removed.

How to make homemade baby wipes:

▪ Use clean paper towels in a container that will keep them moist.
▪ Add 2 cups water, 2 tablespoons of the baby wash you use, and 1 tablespoon of baby oil.

Always keep all cleaning products and solutions out of reach of children. Call Poison Control if you think a child has ingested any cleaning products or solutions: 1-800-222-1222.

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