MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Republican state senator is calling for officials to disclose the names and locations of the long-term care facilities in Minnesota where residents or staff have tested positive for COVID-19.
Karin Housley, the chair of the Senate Family Care and Aging Committee, issued a statement Wednesday, urging Gov. Tim Walz and the Minnesota Department of Health to release those details to the public going forward.
“As Minnesotans confront a new reality, access to information is critical as we make decisions for ourselves and our loved ones,” she said. “We must make full disclosure the standard in Minnesota, just as they have done in Colorado, Oregon, and other states hit by the coronavirus.”
Currently, the Minnesota Department of Health reports daily on the number of COVID-19 cases in the state by county. However, it does not release information on the precise location of these cases. Health officials say providing those precise details is against the law, as it would violate the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPA).
So far, COVID-19 has killed 17 people in Minnesota, 11 of whom were residents in long-term care facilities, The Star Tribune reports. Additionally, health officials have confirmed that more than 50 residents and staff in long-term care facilities have tested positive for the coronavirus.