[Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] [Music] good afternoon everyone welcome to our pool reporters once again thank you for your your understanding the collaboration amongst the media to social distance and share to Minnesotans good afternoon to you i yesterday we obviously had an announcement of one of the pieces towards making sure Minnesotans are safe making sure that Minnesotans are healthy and making sure that our plan to carry things out to to keep people moving in a direction where we can start thinking about what the future looks like I thought on the way over here today and I think it seems almost unimaginable it's been four weeks since our stay at home order Minnesotans have have done what was asked of them as well as any place in the country and that's based on data on the number of the flattening of the curve and where some of our numbers are out I also thought about one of the things every day that's um that's both the bright spot of my day and one of the hardest things I do Minnesotans setting down and and writing notes and sending letters over and I'll give all those to the Historical Society because I think someday when we look back on this time period which they certainly will and wonder how Minnesotans were thinking and it's it's their joys it's the things that they're thinking at home they pour out their their fears and their angst they're concerned about their businesses they they talk about all of the things that this has done and the one thing that the the thread that runs through all that is is the hopefulness of Minnesotans the belief that we can do things differently and today I want to spend a little time at the beginning of this to kind of broaden this discussion out we've talked a lot about the lanes where in you you've all become familiar with PPE and social distancing as I said on the state of the state those are things we didn't even talk about you know last year six months ago now the sudden they become part of our everyday vocabulary but that's there's a one lanes then we talk about we're joined today by Commissioner Ricker on education and we're gonna make some announcements on on schooling we're gonna talk to a family owned business that has been a touchstone of Minnesota for 75 years and and how all these things play together and the theme that keeps coming back to me both in these letters and and what I see in the data and the facts is Minnesota has handled this in a very Minnesota way we've stayed home with social distance we flattened the curve we brought businesses and government together to build partnerships around how do we get PPE we brought hospitals around and used the institutions that have been invested in by generations of Minnesotans like the University of Minnesota all of our health care systems Mayo Hennepin County all of those to do something that hasn't been done in another state and challenged ourselves to do it and so today I want to spend just a little bit of time and in talking about just what all those things mean together again I come back to this Minnesotans you stayed home you bought us time we've worked with hospitals to increase our surge capacity we partnered with the businesses as I said and what you see here and some of you're familiar with this this is on the dashboard that we launched about two weeks ago it is well over a million hits of people going on here it gets hundreds of thousands of hits a day as people see what we've done how many masks do we have now how many beds do we have now how many critical care units do we have how many could we have in 24 48 and 72 hours this was part of the preparation it came at a huge sacrifice we are all very all too familiar with with that sense that's their the cabin fever that's getting at us the sense of dread about our businesses and our jobs but it was a strategy that will protect our neighbors it's a strategy that will protect our hospital system and it's bought us the time necessary and we've learned we learn every day about this virus sometimes we get good news sometimes we hear news that's not so good we hear potential promising therapies and then those might not happen but the fact the matter is learning and we're approaching it and we're in a state that has the capacity to do exactly that it certainly changed how we do things we're going to see in confections increase Commissioner Malcolm is going to talk about this today this is not unusual but is the thing that I dreaded I dreaded it on the night of the state-of-the-state because there was a line in that speech that said we're going to see infections increase we're going to see people get sick and where you're going to see people die that was inevitable in a pandemic the numbers showed that what we could do is not to be at the mercy of this virus we could do all we can to make sure that it was lower and fewer but the fact of the matter is today as you're going to hear we're going to have the highest death total and the highest number of new cases the thing I would just remind everyone about is the sheer numbers that you're going to see are going to go up significantly because of our testing the real critical piece is how many people's lives do we save and how well is our hospital system be able to take it so as we start to report these things I hope you start to think about it we're going to go from 200 new confirmed cases to potentially a thousand or more once this starts to go the question will be how many of them ended up in the hospital and when they did was the care there for them this pandemic has created real challenges it's exacerbated racial and economic disparities that is just simply a fact it is also exacerbated Geographic disparities it's something we've talked about in this state for a long time I talked a lot about it around one Minnesota that our diversity of geography our diversity of economic opportunities our diversity of cultures is our strength that made us strong but what we've all known is that there was a softness underneath that that could cause problems in those communities so we still need to by it's still hard to buy everything but we're getting there we need to turn over every stone we can but I want to again after yesterday's announcement there is no silver bullet but there are things that we can put together to do this the Minnesota way and that's what I want to spend a little bit time of talking about everything we do has a trade-off as that is simply the way it is so at the center of our decisions when we talk you've got used to that social distancing kovat 19 distance learning new ways to make safe workplaces all these commissioners and all the people out there listening at this but at the heart of this is people its Minnesotans and when these teams that are assembling making the decisions that are impacting your life I can assure you that at the center of that discussion is how do we make sure Minnesotans can live healthy safe and happy lives and I don't choose that term happy as just to throw it in there at the end it is very difficult to be happy when you're afraid of losing your business is very difficult to be happy when you wonder how you're going to pay your rent it is very difficult to be happy when things that you have prepared your whole life for get pushed off or get cancelled so those are pieces that have to be included so when people are having this conversation and you're all having it as we think about the health and the safety piece of it where do the other pieces fit in where does the economic pieces fit in and how do we make sure when we're doing those trade-offs that there is a level of risk that is acceptable in terms of making sure we're not putting the most vulnerable at risk making sure that we're not taking shortcuts that let this thing get ahold and burn back through our community but also understanding that we knew this from the beginning Jan Malcolm talked about it dr.
Ulster whom talked about it this was going to be a marathon you may not know it by looking at me but I am a distance runner and I still do that and what I know is is that that half marathon or marathon is not indicated by that first mile you get out you got out fast you got a good time it's gonna be a long haul and I think for all of us to understand in that long haul we're going to have to strike that balance to keep people healthy safe and happy as best we can about maintaining the things that we know will bend that curve keep people safe but yet keep people functioning the way they need to so we're slowing the spread we have to build immunity you're not gonna eliminate this thing you heard dr.
osnome you've heard Commissioner Malcolm you heard dr.
Burks it doesn't matter where you go the preponderance of the evidence is this is going to take time and it's going to be like so many of these types of infections it's going to take time to build up the immunity making sure that those that can weather this do so but those that cannot are not put at risk so protecting those frontline workers ensuring our health care system is is ready to go and then gradually moving Minnesotans back if I can leave you with anything today safely and slowly resuming things just to be clear we're in our stay at home order till May 4th nothing changes on that that's what's giving us this time it's it's moving it's moving us in the right direction but we have to quit thinking about this that somebody's going to say something we're gonna flick a switch it is it is the most it's the clearest question and it is the most beautiful questions that come from the children who write me to the young woman who named her dog after me I'm taking that as a compliment so I appreciate that one in that but the young people who ask the simple question that all of the reporters in this room will ask when is this going to be over and it feels like it is going to be again the moment that it's over I think we have to acclimate ourselves to the fact that this is that continuum and this is that dial turning this is the dial turning as we go back and the dial is going to at times move in both directions so I want to be clear about that that this is a critical component of this discussion because Minnesotans well-being is going to fit into that very clearly I'm asking you stay home and you can continue to work from home if that's a possibility for you don't make unnecessary trips do the things that are necessary where your physical presence is critical we have to start thinking about how do we do this how do we move into a way that lets us view this as a marathon that is sustainable over a long haul because it was very clear early on you could shelter in place which some countries are talking about which I don't sustainable shelter-in-place till we get a vaccine I don't think that's sustainable and I think there is a calculus in that of damage that comes with that that needs to be factored in so the folks who are bringing that up I want to be very clear that is not a disrespect or a callousness to putting other people at risk it's part of an equation and I think we would all do better if we continued to talk that way if we continue to think about this that it's not the either/or it's somewhere along the continuum and I think what I have come to the conclusion of and this may be the genius of each of the states I think we should have a much more coordinated strategy but when we don't the state of Minnesota is very capable of implementing a Minnesota strategy I think we proved that yesterday we're going to continue to weigh the very real economic impacts of this decision we're going to work towards long-term protection of at-risk populations we're going to identify test all symptomatic people of every age race income in zip code we can't leave anybody behind that was the goal in doing this that will help alleviate some of those things that we're seeing of the disparities going for everything setting that reopens there must be a detailed plan so I'm going to talk to you about what we're thinking about here oops factors to consider these this is the chart and the thinking that we go through and how we use this of figuring public health failing social distancing and figuring well-being and if you look at the middle of the diagram of trying to get a healthy functioning somewhat semblance around normalness that we can continue down this marathon path till we get to that we get to that vaccine or therapeutics so some of the key key key questions if some of you are looking at this and we'll put this up on our website or get that out there to you how everything we talk about in public health we listen to the public health people on this we listen to the experts and this is the questions they ask how does this impact a possible spread of the disease how prepared are we to test trace and isolate those in our communities are exposed our hospitals prepared to treat patients and how does this impact Public Health for non kovat illnesses that's a pretty complex matrix there that they're trying to look but those are the questions that have to be asked and what we mean by it like on the last one how does this impact Public Health from an ANCOVA illness this is a question commissioner Malcolm is asked often don't forego treatment that you need don't forget but I mentioned it this morning we have to think about these elective surgeries fall back to that happiness of life if you're waiting to have a hip replaced your life is not happy every single day and the reasons that the hospital's asked us to put the more time on elective surgeries to do that first slide I showed you is to build the PPE to make sure when the surgeon the need comes we can simultaneously do both and that's what we have been thinking about so during this four-week period of staying home of the ank's the frustrations the things that are happening to all of you this worked behind the scenes has been asking these questions and then moving on them because of that to make sure these things in this first set of public health gets answered we absolutely have have to have hospital capacity we absolutely have to have the PPE necessary and we absolutely have to start doing data on what else is being impacted social distancing can you effectively social distance when doing this action and we're thinking about this take for example golfing that was the question as we asked why can't golfing be open where are the things that were there how many people will congregate together if you can do golfing can you do baseball games how will those work these are some of the questions do we have the supplies needed to keep workers and customers safe how big is the gathering and will people be safe are the settings predictable and how people gather you're gonna see more of this predictable settings versus unpredictable settings a predictable setting is a factory with set workstations that have been cleaned that have protective equipment on people and know exactly who touches the product and where it goes a very unpredictable setting is a baseball game with people getting up to go to the concession stand or the restroom why they're a bunch amongst a lot of people those are two very different predictability levels and it impacts how we think about what can social distancing do again to make sure that we are not moving away from public health because of what we're doing with social distancing or the third thing social distancing too much where well-being is impacted so the questions we've been asking well this action we're doing actually helped spur an economic recovery if we're going to ask something and if we're going to move in a direction or take a risk will this spur economic activity does the action promote the mental health and well-being of the public does this action encourage our communities to return to civic life in a thoughtful manner and does this action have meaningfully improve the lives of people so you could think about it from golf you could think about it from the parks you could think about it from businesses going back and what it means to them can it meet these criteria and our answer is what we think is in essential businesses and things that we've done that there may be a Minnesota way with testing with PPE capacity with social distancing that you can start putting more into that middle section where it meets the criteria of social distancing public health and well-being now here's I'd like you to think about this the first thing when you look at this slide is I want you to go to the bottom throughout this entire process these are things that will not change these are the constants safe practices washing your hands stay home in your six social distancing masks that I see and all of us are doing outside and then kovat 19 responds we have to be able to test trace isolate built needed Hospital capacity and continue through this whole process to procure the things necessary to keep the most important thing in this chain functioning the providers of health care we cannot have a cascading effect where we lose providers we cannot have a cascading effect where those that are taking care of us are too sick to do that that's what you've seen in places where things have gone bad and then I want you to move to the top and this is how we're thinking about it if you look on the left side of the slide with workplace settings this is what we're talking about a dial as it moves if you notice on the bottom critical services or smaller and highly predictable settings as you start to move up that dial you're losing some of the predictability of what will happen so you could get maybe up in the where you have people cooking in a restaurant or people running a business and delivering wearing gloves and masks out to the curb to deliver their product that is a little less predictable but it's on a dial where we think you can start to move too you are certainly not going to and I mentioned this yesterday you're not going to jump when I saw last week Nebraska was talking about opening a mall I'm really glad that they decided the next day that was not a great idea because if you look at what's happening that is a larger less predictable setting in workplace settings so when we go back to the slide you saw before trying to figure out when do we move the dial is going to be predicated on can we answer those questions about it same thing with social gatherings and this is the one that I get this this is the hardest the safest place the most smaller and highly predictable setting is a stay at home order and we implemented that the dial is turned down quite a ways and the reason for that once again was stop the spread build the PPE build the hospital capacity and plan for testing and moving away from that what will start to happen is you will start to see it move up where you could have smaller gatherings where we were originally an 10 people gathering together start to get it where we can social distance in places of worship where they maybe have more room I think most of us know the backyard barbecue with 50 people hanging out the large sporting event our concert those are highly unpredictable and no matter what you do the social distancing is very very challenging so I think what you would expect we're not looking in Minnesota that there is going to be a point in time or a number that says if you do six thousand two hundred eighteen tests and Jan Malcolm says that we've seen a drop of three cases every day for 14 days that means everything can open up that we don't feel that makes sense because we also think there is the potential and this is what we're going to talk about today we think there's the potential that you can move that dial without some of those hard set facts we also know when the testing starts to show we may have to be prepared to move the dial back down again this is the debate you heard yesterday about the fall resurgence in conjunction with flu may start to cause those same problems which is of course an overcrowding of the hospitals a lack of PPE and the need for more ICU beds but at this point in time those are how those two work and then of course school settings distance learning tell in-person school learning and this is a snapshot of where Minnesota is today it's a snapshot of what we've done and again if you viewed it as an on/off switch stay at home was never needles bottom to the left it was never that 80% of working critical business and have gained us valuable lessons you're gonna hear from Bob regal men in a bit a business right across the street that's very similar to his that was deemed for right reasons an essential business he can practice the same exact things they're doing and be able to do his business that seems to us to make sense where that dial could be able to turn but those who say you flick the switch we're not gonna peg out to the right because no matter how much you wish that would be a good thing what would happen is is we know the virus would skyrocket we would overwhelm the system and we would lose the lives that that we have so far protected so here's what the state's going to do we're meeting with stakeholder groups whether business nonprofit and other organizations to discuss their unique dynamics we're creating templates of preparedness for use by responsible entities tailored to each setting you'll hear about one and a little bit provide opportunity for public comment on draft of these templates just to be clear this is not setting up this is not an Commissioner Leppink does not have the capacity to go out into every business immediately what we understood is the unique nature of this pandemic is that the partnerships that we're developing and the things that we've seen working and the areas that we know are going to be a challenge congregate living centers and congregate businesses are making up the bulk of where we're at so the people who are saying my Ace Hardware store in Wilmer I can control the number of people per square foot in there very tightly I can disinfect is there a plan where that makes sense for us to be able to operate because these logical things that you're hearing people say is why would there be any less risk in this setting than there would be in say a deemed an essential business like a superstore like a Walmart or something like that those things are absolutely what we're asking and the questions we want to answer and we think that makes sense rather than saying no no non-essential businesses can function there's going to be some as I'm just saying it I I wish I could even envision when we're going to be back in a crowded stadium but that is at the end of the marathon right at this point in time there's some opportunities responsible entities will create a preparedness enforcement plan they'll sign signal or certify those they will obtain necessary supplies the masking gloves that they're working on some of them are already thinking about way down the line as Bob was talking about he'd like to be able to have the capacity to be able to test all his employees that's exactly the type of thinking we want to see people do and it's exactly the type of capacity as a state and nation we need to have to have more certainty in getting people back in instruct customers on required safety we all have responsibilities this not crowding into a store not touching everything being cognizant and changing your behavior effectively supervise and monitor these plans and create a plan for closing down sanitizing the setting if a surge flares up this is what we're going to see we're going to need to be able to do that that's that needle changing up and down all right we're slowly getting used to the practices that have to continue I can't stress enough we are not lifting today the stay at home order for May 4th what we're saying is all along on this we are learning we are adding new tools into that into this fight we're adding new partnerships we're learning every single day and we're building ways to get to that point where we can keep people healthy we can keep them safe and we can start to increase that happiness factor and that idea of taking off the economic pressure off of them by seeing what is possible where face masks in public we have not mandated this I I will continue to say this was somewhat debatable early on the fact of the matter is is that it doesn't make it worse at this time to spread it I do it I would ask all of you I think it builds the sense of confidence in us that this is working we're seeing a psychological effect that I think we're gonna start to see some data behind it yet when you have the mask on there's a sense of naturally being cognizant of social distancing and the way that you're the way that you're interacting with people we're gonna symptom screen temperature check maintain physical distance from each other and again I say this the things that we love so much are going to be hard to do all right our plan for moving forward stay at home remains in place till May 4th we'll make a decision on this we wanted to do this because we have done it the whole time we have seen this as a dial we have seen Minnesota's ability to be flexible that it was never a stay-at-home order that was a stay at home for the sake of staying at home the stay at home order was being asked and answered for those first set of questions that we had up there is it doing these things is it getting to there if the answer was not we had to ask ourselves why are we doing it if it is not getting to that or if we're seeing things start to spring up hotter why are we not doing more in those areas that is going to continue to be exactly how we function and continue to move so it is not a point in time that is frozen it is an ever-changing and evolving place but I am telling you this by cutting down unnecessary travel by staying on the sacrifices you make have put us in a position where we can start thinking about how do we start turning the dial and normalizing some of the things that have been taken away our testing is going to be critical Jan may mention a little bit of that and I'm gonna announce here in a minute we're going to be extending the distant learning throughout the rest of the year and I know Commissioner Ricker is here to answer any questions on that and and we're going to try and safely allow the folks we can to get back to work yesterday we launched straight wedge strategy to expand this that partnership you've heard about I'm here to say on behalf of Minnesota again thank you to all of the players that involved in that this gives us a fighting chance this gives us an opportunity slow the spread of the virus help identify folks jump on the hotspots early and what's also happening and I'm I'm glad to see this vice-president Pence is going to be visiting the Mayo Clinic this week talking about some of the research we are at the center of most of the work that's being done around this right now so this is good news Minnesota and it's uh it's what I asked of you I asked us to step up and lead and that's what we're doing here's the announcement on distant learning and there is no joy in this but there is an awful lot of thanks to everybody involved the first thanks goes to the students and and I want to speak directly to the class of 2020 those of you those of us who are older think back fondly to those this is in that school career these are those times these are the times when you forge friendships with people you maybe hadn't for 11 years I think many of us would say how interesting that is the folks in the last three or four months of your school career that you started to bond with and see you started to think about what the next phase of your life was like you started to see yourself and it's a rite of passage that that you were adults you were young adults and you were being treated that way and your future laid out in front of you it feels like that's been taken and it has from you none of us ever had to go through that we have the the privilege and the luxury of being able to do all of those fun things and our sports careers on spring sports but here's what I do know this period in time you will be forever the class of 2020 you will not be defined by staying home and missing proms and missing graduations you will be defined by understanding how interconnected our world is and what it means to come together to try and solve hard problems I I would venture to say that the closeness of the classes of 2020 will be much closer than any other that came before this ties you together in a way that has not been ever seen and I just want you to know that these decisions being made they break our heart to the teachers out there thank you for everything you're doing I know what you're losing I I think about those of us who do this job those moments of Epiphany that happened in a classroom the the class discussions on a lesson that go down a road that everyone's imagination including the teacher and you leave with a sense of wonder of what could be possible those are all being denied you're learning new ways to deliver distant learning and I also want to be very clear this is not the perfect solution I am proud of Commissioner Ricker and her team I am proud of Minnesota's students teachers and parents that some have just sent people home and gave them a you know a list of homework whatever that's not happening but I am want to be very cognizant I think someone at the Department said this there are places where we say wow on this plan and then there's places we say whoa and I I want to be very clear we were having a very important discussion preak ovid in Minnesota about inequities in our education system a very important discussion that has only been highlighted because of this it is certainly falling heavily on communities of color indigenous communities it's falling heavily on rural communities because of the lack of broadband so tomorrow we are going to do a much more extensive deep dive into what our expectations are but today's executive order will continue distance learning to the end of the school year with modifications and I think attempts to try and offset what are clearly inequities that are being exacerbated by this so we'll keep we'll keep looking on that and keep bringing you back but again to the students thank you for for doing this I can't express I'm sure the the sense of the sense of loss you've had but I would ask you to to see your unique role you're gonna have a life experience that none of us had it is going to shape how you think about the things you do in the future and I for one am very hopeful about that I think you're going to think with a forward lense to make sure that we don't end up in situations like this again so currently we have 2.
6 million people working in Minnesota today's order was developing consultations with hundreds of businesses with labor groups with worker organizations and with the public health experts none of this would be done without a sign-off of independent health experts about the Department of Health and Commissioner Malcolm and the autonomy to be able to help us adjust and tell us where and when we can go as a part of this this will probably allow eighty to a hundred thousand more people and similar industries to start returning on Monday you're gonna hear I think about a hundred of them or so from Bob's company that's going to go so I'll let you look at that to reopen the business must create share implemented cope in nineteen prerna's plan they're going to work on all the hygiene engage in health screening of employees and sure the sick employees stay at home I'll tell you we partnered with Target to do anonymous ability to be able to track that health data there will be no personal data but inside the company you'll be able to see of the 90 people anonymously on there what's happening every day with their temperature what's happening with their sickness that's going to be a free app that's going to be supported and given out that makes great sense it's one of the things that 'buddy me ologists tell us is going to be key to this and continue to work from home of course whenever possible so we're discussing things today about talking about who can work I just want to pause for a moment there are some people they had not only no choice they ran to the danger they are the frontline workers that have been there weather treating people at the point of healthcare delivery whether they have been at the grocery store clerking for a month or more now in a time of a pandemic they are all the people that work to clean the buildings and all of those frontline essential workers that as I've said so many times before in our society it might have been easy to see them as to not see them because they might have been invisible and they worked at night or you didn't see them I think we know right now where the importance lies and I want to just make sure that all of those people listening nothing we will do we are guarded against this puts you at a greater risk if it starts to do that because of the moves we're making we will dial that dial back because it is critical for us that they have the equipment and stay healthy to deliver what they need to deliver so here's what's next continue to trace test trace isolate continue to buy PPE build out our hospital surge capacity and protect those Atma risk we've done a great job of that to this point we've got more to do we'll monitor closely and report daily to Minnesotans start turning the dial toward a more reopening as the factors come into play we will not be driven by arbitrary numbers and we will not be driven by arbitrary dates we will be driven by facts on the ground and the capacity to do this in the Minnesota way and always prepared if we have to dial it back we will in even as we open life's not going to look the same so Minnesotans I want to take just a little more time because this is a conversation we're all having it is not good enough to discuss these things in their lanes alone we have to try and compile it so that it starts to look like the diagram of what does a healthy safe social distance an economically viable state look like that's what we're trying to do and I think because of the partnerships we've built up and I believe because of the way Minnesotans have handled this social distancing we've got an opportunity to show the country the way it goes the way it can go so with that I took a little more my time John I just want to have you update them more today and we'll have Steve and Bob thank you Thank You governor I'm gonna be extremely brief today and just give you kind of the quick fact updates situationally around the world globally this morning we had nearly 2.
6 5 million cases and 184 thousand deaths in the United States over eight hundred and forty two thousand cases and almost 47 thousand deaths and in Minnesota sadly as the governor said I'm sorry to report that these are our largest growth totals day over day so far we had an additional 223 laboratory-confirmed cases yesterday bringing our total up to 2000 942 that is again laboratory confirmed cases in a part of the increase that you see is because we are testing more we tested about 600 more people yesterday than the day before so then you can only expect that number to grow and as the governor has said as we test more we're going to find more and that's the whole point so just the fact that we're going to see the numbers grow we should be prepared for that we will continue to benchmark our progress against other states who and we we do rank at the bottom of the curve still in terms of cases per 100, 000 people but we don't want to rest on our laurels about that because we know that is influenced by the volume of testing we're not doing badly for a population of our size but we must do much much better not only to find all the cases that are out there but to go but to go looking for for the opportunities to to intervene in hot spots really quickly and to be able to support businesses that want to assure the safety of their workers as much as they possibly can so I think those those totals again are just something we're going to have to keep in context as we go here unfortunately also this was our largest day in terms of additional deaths in a single day with 21 additional Minnesotans died of kovat 19 yesterday this includes 10 in Hennepin County 3 in Ramsey 2 in Washington but also 3 in Winona to an Olmsted and one in Clay County so the disease does continue to to spread across our state as has been the pattern most of these are elderly folks at 21 of a 21 deaths in total 6 people in their 90's 9 in their 80s 3 in their 70s to 60s and 1 in their 50s and 20 of the 21 deaths once again occurred in residents of long-term care facilities which again is not terribly surprising that's where we know the risk is concentrated in congregate settings as the governor has mentioned we're learning a lot of lessons from our work with some of the facilities that are that are experiencing this and again appreciate everything that the long-term care provider community is doing in the face of really difficult circumstances the governor talked about the people going going willingly into the settings where they're caring for people that they know are already ill and how very important it is that we'd be able to test those workers understand who's been exposed to get them safe get their contacts a their family's safe but it's also then creates a cascade of challenges around the workforce the long-term care workforce and we're grateful to see partnership from the hospitals and from other sectors trying to help us figure out how we can support the long-term care workforce which was already under stress before this began so just an awful lot of really really important and good work going on across the healthcare continuum it's not just hospitals it's primary care clinics community clinics hospitals long-term care community based services all of these providers need need our support and our thanks a piece of good news as of today 1536 patients have been released for my isolation also on the hospitalization front now you see the case counts going up sadly you see the deaths going up hospitalizations continue to increase as well but as still at sort of a measured pace and we hope that that continues but we're preparing for a bigger uptick 268 patients in the hospital as of today but slightly smaller percentage of that in intensive care so we're not predicting that that will necessarily remain the case but but it's an interesting point I think at this point governor I'm really proud to introduce one of my great colleagues Commissioner Steve Grove from deed well thank you commissioner Malcolm hello everybody I want to begin just by sharing the numbers on unemployment insurance for today as of March as of today since March 16th we now have five hundred thirty six thousand seven hundred and forty two applications for unemployment insurance and just to give a little bit of context of that we are now above the number of employment unemployment insurance applications that we had during the Great Recession we had about 450, 000 back in 2009 so we've moved beyond that peak during the Great Recession this week we've had thirty thousand five hundred applications so far we continue to see a sustained downward trend in those applications again we got ahead of this really earlier by opening up our system to those who are affected by kovat 19 but we do continue to see you know seven to ten thousand new applications come in every day and of course lots of phone calls and we do encourage people to use the website but you can call in and we're here to help you out just stay in the line because it is is a long wait time when you call in I want to start a little bit more tell a bit more about executive order 2040 which the governor mentioned earlier which involves the process of beginning this process to safely bring people back to work and it is a limited first step and before I get into some of the details I want to talk a little bit about how we we got here and how we got to this how the governor got to this decision back on April 8th with a stay at home executive order 2033 the governor asked the Department employment economic development the Department of Labor and Industry and the Department of Health to begin a planning process for what the reopening of our economy would look like and since then we have talked with hundreds of business leaders and labor leaders across the state we've heard from thousands more via an online forum we've had a lot of different meetings twice weekly we meet with every single chamber commerce in the entire state twice think weekly we meet with all the major labor unions across the state to hear their feedback every single week we with the Minnesota business partnership which is some of those larger companies in Minnesota who would give us great advice and thoughts we've assembled a panel of experts on social distancing practices we've engaged the human centered design firm to help us examine what exactly the dynamics in settings should look like from a user perspective to make sure that we're thinking through social distancing really thoughtfully we've got a panel of experts in from business on economic security issues and that online forum I discussed a little bit ago that's taken over 4, 000 suggestions and ideas from Minnesotans across the state and how to get social distancing and health and safety right in a work environment and it's been extremely helpful to get those ideas from Minnesotans all of that collaborative effort together has led us to the framework that the governor laid out earlier and also led us to the executive order 2040 which he signed today so that executive order as the governor said allows industrial manufacturing and office based businesses that are not customer facing to return to work beginning on Monday April 27 so the order is signed today but isn't ago until next Monday we believe this executive order will allow about 20, 000 businesses to go back to work that's about 80 to a hundred thousand workers in the state who are currently not working so they'll be joining the 2.
6 million Minnesotans who currently are working now it's up to every business to decide whether that they want to come this is not an order to go back to work it's just allowing businesses to go back to work provided they meet some certain guidelines and there's three broad guidelines that the governor has set up for all businesses to adhere to to make sure that going back to work is safe and in prizes the health of Minnesotans as his primary concern first of all every firm that is going back to work should continue to telework or work from home as much as possible and we know businesses are doing that they're figuring out new ways to engage in commerce with workers working from home we highly encourage every business to continue doing that second any business who comes back into the marketplace as a result of this executive order has to create a kovat 19 preparedness plan that follows very closely mdh and CDC guidelines and meets OSHA standards all these plans must include the the provisions to ensure the sick workers stay home no matter what the social distancing practices are followed and that they're followed in the unique dynamics that are true to every particular businesses physical footprint that employee hygiene and service control or source control are there and that there's a strong cleaning and disinfectant protocol in place as well now to make this a little bit easier on businesses my colleague Commissioner Nancy Leppink and her team at the Department of Labor industry have put together a really wonderful template that we've had online on their website throughout this week we're receiving some great feedback on this it essentially allows businesses to take that template use it as their starting point and to create a plan that they would like to use for their business they're not required to use that template but it's a resource that we hope people do take advantage of to make sure they have the best plan possible for their workplace and you've got some time to create these plans again the order comes out today but this isn't really effective until next Monday so we know we'll take some time to go through the planning that's required to ensure you're ready to bring employees back and we really encourage businesses to work with employees on these plans not only are you going to get good ideas from your employees but investing them in the process of building a plan for your workplace means that they'll understand it better and you'll all be on the same page about exactly what your business is going to do as you begin this process of reopening the team at department of labor industries OSHA division will be available to take questions if there's concerns or ideas or you just want some help thinking about how to consider your plan and there to help once you have created this plan we're not requiring you to submit it to state government we are not going to be reviewing his plans again this is 20, 000 businesses that's I don't think a good use of government time but we do want to make sure that you have that plan and so to ensure that all your employer's employees see it we ask that you do sign it certify it post it prevalently around your your facility and disseminate it widely to your employees and then like any good business who we know is already taking care of their employees and in thinking about the communication around this do the training bring people together again we are not going to ask for these plans outright but when we hear about challenges that may be taking places in workplaces the state does reserve the right to ask to see a copy of your plan and then the last piece of this is that all employers are required to conduct health screenings of workers each day upon arrival the governor talked moment above about this new digital tool that target his bill which is a wonderful piece of technology we'll be making available in the next couple of days we have partnered with Target and the Minnesota Safety Council on this it's really an innovative and simple way for businesses to be able to track temperatures of their workers overtime optional for the business optional for the worker but just a tool that's there for businesses to use to track temperature over time and then even more importantly than just the temperature screening piece of this is the health screening questions that CDC and mdh have put together every day when your employees show up asking them you know do you have a cough or muscle aches or or other co-ed leg conditions that are not attributable to you know another health condition and so that health screening part of this is really critical now all these requirements that I just mentioned are in place for all new businesses that will be reopening under executive order 2040 they do not apply to businesses that are already up and operating so I'd be clear about that the requirements here are for these new businesses but I will say that these ideas came from businesses who already are operating we know so many businesses are doing the health screening they have a plan they're talking to employees and so it was really the learning from all those conversations from businesses that aren't up and running in the critical sectors that we use to build this template in this plan for people to use as they come back into a work in to work just for some additional clarity on the executive order it does not allow any customer facing retail environments to reopen that means that if you're a manufacturing or industrial business that has a co-located retail facility that portion of your business cannot reopen it's just the Industrial and manufacturing pieces and again this gets back to the governor's comments on predictability we know it in a factory floor in a manufacturing setting you can predict the environment and the engagement of workers on your floor when customers come in it's a very different dynamic and so we are turning the dial slowly towards predictability to ensure that we get this right and if your business that was affected by executive orders 2004 or 2008 or if your non-critical business and executive orders 2033 that's customer-facing your status has not changed at all based on today's order I want to speak just briefly to how this affects unemployment insurance because we know there's some factors here at play this is I think welcome news what we know to so many workers out there businesses who want to get back to work in a safe and methodical and thoughtful way and get off unemployment insurance and back into the economy but we also know that people are nervous about that you know it's scary to be off of work and be tracking this news about the virus and then and now be going back to work and so it's just so important that businesses create really thoughtful plans be really careful with their workers ensure that we take care of not only the physical and health safety but the psychological safety of workers as they begin this journey unemployment insurance it's a great federal program it remains at its core is safety net so for those who cannot go back to work it's there but if you're able to go back to work you do need to do so and the state cannot pay unemployment insurance benefits to those for those who are able to go to work I think it's important and timely to remind ourselves now of executive order 2005 which did expand unemployment insurance to take care of workers separated from their jobs due to kovat related reasons that that remains the law of Minnesota so if you do need to take care of a loved one due to Cova 19 take care of a child due to school closures or if you yourself are particularly vulnerable to the disease for medical reasons you still do qualify for unemployment insurance and we know that given the announcement both about school closings and distance learning and moving forward and this economic announcement a lot of folks are thinking about child care we know that that's a challenge our team continues to work to support child care providers across the state there is child care open and available Minnesota the team and the children's cabinet has put together a great labs Emin gov slash childcare that site includes a map of open providers and a hotline for parents to call to find care so we'll go into a lot more of these details later today and tomorrow and a couple of webinars you can find them at a website that contains all of this information MN gov slash deed slash Safe Work we'll be doing a webinar at 4 p.
today and then tomorrow again at 11:30 a.
again MN gov slash deed slash Safe Work is where all this information is listed lots of frequently asked questions there to get into some of the details of these pieces we want to make sure that all businesses and workers understand the implications of this plan so moving forward as the governor said we're going to continue to use data and facts based scientific approaches to reopen our economy prioritizing the physical and economic health of Minnesotans and it's going to take some time for life to feel anything like it used to feel but we really feel like with a plan in place government business community is working together we can get this right for all Minnesotans one of those Minnesotans who's been really helpful for us and in really formulating this plan in thinking about how to get this right into factory settings is Bob Riggleman who the governor mentioned earlier before he is the CEO of Riedel skates and Red Wing great company in Red Wing Hina's family have owned that business for 75 years and Bob has been talking to us a lot about how Riedel skates is thinking this through he's been gracious enough to join us today to share how his business will be gradually reopening while keeping health and safety in mind so I'm pleased and thankful to welcome Bob Riggleman to our trust conference today hello everyone and thank you for having me today as the governor mentioned earlier our business is Riedel skates located in Red Wing Steve just mentioned we are a fourth-generation business been here as it's their 75th year the company was started by my grandparents Paul and Sol Freud L I've been with a company for a long time for 43 years and I can honestly say and in my 10 year in 43 years our company has never seen the likes of anything like this before in our history but as painful as it is and as it has been over the last four weeks we knew that pausing our business for the health and safety of our friends our neighbors and our employees was the right thing to do the safety and health of everyone in Minnesota is utmost importance we've done all it's been asked by our governor and now we're extremely excited almost the tears that the governor's partnership and with the governor's partnership that we're taking cautious step forward to reopen our business we've gotten a guidance from deed and for the Department of Labor in industry how to successfully Ropin our business our employees our plant superintendent our director manufacturing or HR director myself we're taking that guidance and we're building our plan to make the necessary adaptations to keep our employees and our customers safe all along getting our business back to doing what we do best best and that's building great product for our customers like all Minnesotans business owners have had to adjust and adapt to a new normal not really sure what that new normal is going to shake out to be it changes every day and as business owners out there you all know it's not easy but it's the right thing to do and right off skates I can guarantee you that we will continue to work with the governor and his team to make sure that the health and safety all of our employees and all Minnesotans comes first thank you for the time today I'll turn it back over to governor thank you thank you thank you Bob I'm gonna go back and maybe and look at that on the on the well being the social all the piece of this this is the conference the broader conversation and Minnesotans can figure out how to do this and I think about it with a business like Rydell skates a family that put their heart and soul in this and we hear this about the economy there's also the aspect in that community what they did there are generations of people in Red Wing that bought houses raised their children's went to Red Wing High School experienced what life is like in one of the great communities in this state because they had the opportunity to work at Rydell skates every business out there has that same story so I want to be very clear as we look to the dial what we're asking is we're turning the dial slightly on workplace settings but I want to be very clear those folks who are further on the dial have Bob story too they have those same things that are out that make those communities great that brings pride into that and creates that economic growth what we're trying to do in an unprecedented situation is create a Minnesota model that is able to find that sweet spot in the middle where public health and the social distancing the changes we need to make also can coincide with getting as many people in the well-being place as they can I'm gonna say can I don't know if TV how long they can stay I will stay longer to answer questions because we ran a little longer we wanted to go through this and I do want to say we're glad to answer the questions on on education but we will focus specifically tomorrow on some of the deeper dive into that but we're glad to take any questions so sure distance learning is going to continue to the end of this school year you've directed the Commission put together some guidance on distance learning for this summer you don't say anything about fall should parents be expecting to do distance learning this summer and what should they be expecting about the fall all in the Commissioner talking and I think this is the question I think we should keep asking the answer is I don't know yet on this fall and I think it's because the ever-evolving piece of this I think we're going to learn a lot as we have it it seems unimaginable to me this shutdown and I'm sure Bob you would agree has been for weeks because of the catastrophic cascading nature of what it's done but I'm also seeing as we add in the capacity to test as we add in some of these things we're changing the dynamic so I'll have Commissioner Ricker talk but they're just honestly I don't know yet about the fall but I'll have to tell you all we're thinking about this multiple pass out this think about what it looks like to come back think about what a potential hybrid looks like because I can tell you we know that there are students out there that are that we can do better with I think the Commissioner so please yeah thank you so much for your question and I appreciate that the governor keeping this slide up my heart is really heavy today with this announcement because of the impact we know this is having on our students and their families how badly our students want to continue to connect with their friends and their educators and in their school settings and we know we are already thinking ahead to this fall and and quite frankly we're not even just thinking this fall we're thinking what the school year looks like what does it look like to support students both because of their experience they are having this spring the experience they will carry forward and then the the talent and expertise and the readiness we want to make sure our school communities have to really support our students and their families and and that teaching and learning environment so these questions are incredibly important to us to when we consider meeting the needs of students in a brick-and-mortar setting um we have become so much closer to the Department of Health every single day we keep we keep our weekly phone calls with our school nurses so that we are constantly checking in on them we are looking at all of the data they're bringing in and we are look the evidence that students and families are providing us to to just have you know what are their frustrations what are their their challenges and and so we are not only committing to recalibrating this distance learning experience right now also anticipating what it could look like this summer to support students and to support teaching and learning and we are starting to ask some of those questions work with some of our experts in the field our educators and and continue to listen to students and Families for what next fall could look like and what the whole school year could look like huge lift for parents if schools are out in the summer but especially in the fall when are you committing to getting that answer to them on the summer and in the fall as soon as humanly possible that's I think us announcing today is that I know people are already looking towards towards May 4th what that means we're trying to convey in real time and I just candidly on this I I think I don't know yet what that'll look like I think you know there's there's potential game changers in this both ways if this thing gets worse or if we get some therapeutics so my commitment to them is is also with a father of a 7th grader in the Saint Paul public schools I I hear everyone out there and this is difficult and it's it's certainly easier for some families and than others but we have got to figure that I think the commissioners commitment to this was our first month of delivery on this we have those eight days to prepare we know that we have to continue to evolve and change this so as soon as we can this is for you and also Commissioner Ricker if you'd like to answer it as well I'm hearing from school administrators some parents are calling for schools to stick more to core classes like science math and English and drop some of the electives during this distance learning has there been any consideration to allow parents to opt to choose a focus more on classes mineralogy this is this way it comes up once all of us on I really appreciate that question because I I dunno at the heart of that question is our educators and students and Families creating distance learning plans that meet their school communities they're the the one-size-fits-all approach for the entire state of Minnesota right now is focused on the safety of our students the health of our communities and those distance learning plans will live and die with how they are tailored to our school communities and and so it is listening to those frustrations and those struggles and shapeshifting and quite frankly keeping relationships with students at the center of any plan and so I would caution any school community with making sort of broad decisions about core classes versus electives because the one thing keeping a student connected to their school community may be that subject area that someone else is advocating too thin to thin out and so the more a distance learning plan is is designed to shape its school community the more equitable it will be for students and their families and the more it will maintain student relationships at the center of that work one of the things I did early on in the planning period was also encourage educators to cluster standards so you know engage in interdisciplinary activities so that you could make better use of time with students while still making sure that you're keeping relationships at the center and meeting those academic standards at the same time it's a great question though and I think it's that's what we're learning I told my seventh grader the one thing I know for certain is geography we'll stay part of the curriculum so that's personal don't but it is it's a great question and I thank the parents and I think the engagement that we're all learning this is it's an amazing learning opportunity after this is over it's exposing strengths and weaknesses in our system that that we need to to see that regarding academic standards and it is unlikely that students are learning as much now or in a classroom setting do you have any evidence that they're falling falling behind and what are you going to do to help catch them up on their learning if their problem and then are you're holding them accountable to the usual academic standards in the first place I will say before the commissioner because we've talked about this a lot and we're all talking about it I I worry deeply on this I mean these are decisions that will reverberate through a lifetime potentially we know what educational research shows we knows what happens when you fall a grade level or two behind at certain times so this is a question we're asking and commissioner thank you so much I know one of the first things our educators did during that planning period was look at the menu of academic standards they planned to address this spring and really distilled them down into what the imperative standards would be they would address and then they also looked at the sort of benefits they would get from again maintaining relationships with students strengthening those relationships with students to make sure that students who had to leave their brick-and-mortar setting had to leave their friends had to leave their their educational space had to leave their educators that they would still feel seen and heard and still feel connected to their school communities and and it's those things in in in many respects you know before this I would say that the strongest teaching and learning conditions meet the academic needs of students the social-emotional needs of students and do so in a safe and welcoming environment we asked our school communities to redesign that strong academic that strong teaching and learning experience in a distance learning setting meeting their academic needs their social emotional needs and recreating that safe and welcoming and fireman no matter what space a student was in so we know that if we keep relationships at the center that there are going to be some academic standards that we're going to need to address next fall and that's why I say looking into next school year it is an entire school year long expectation that we will have to continue to come back to meeting the needs of our students and making sure that what got on the cutting room floor this spring perhaps gets woven into what next fall looks like and perhaps even the fall after that it's a great question and it's one that will this will be ever-evolving this has changed the way we look at it the the just great level achievement and all those things so that's why I think tomorrow we'll make sure we deep dive – we're glad to answer any more on this will do flipside to these 20, 000 businesses that will be able to reopen on Monday now that you're ramping up testing I have read in some other states where they're hoping for 14 days of decreasing positive tests before they start to reopen customer-facing businesses what do you tell the customer facing business is here because the amount of testing increase is going to show an increase in cases it will that's a great question in the white house opening of America actually their first two points are rapidly increasing testing and then 14 days of going back down we think the CDC guidance is critically important but we also think the unique nature of each state warns us taking a look at this and and I think what we're talking about is not just that point in time and what I mean by that is we do want to see numbers going down but we're not necessarily sure that there's a magic behind 14 days that that in itself is going to stop the spread or that in itself should be the gateway for that particular business we think there is a more nuanced approach we think there is a more public health approach as it intersects with well being in social distancing because if we're getting better results in social distancing significantly better results than other states the 14 number is arbitrary because we are doing more on that front end of social distancing than the 14 days coming down is so what I'm telling them is is to stick with us on this continue to talk to us that we believe the way to do this is is to create a unique model two situations here two testing here two social distancing here and to the spread of the disease as we see it and adapt accordingly so I would tell them that that we're using CDC and mdh guidance but we are trying to create a template here that I think is but unique Minnesota so you're right because we said that same question when do you think you're gonna see 14 days of downturn here seriously if the models are inside there you know confidence interval the soonest you're going to see that is the end of May and the latest you might see it is July before you would see 14 days down what we think we can we can do here is is through testing identification and social distancing it's changed the curve that would be one metric in there not necessarily the most important metric is it's going to be volume because again I keep telling us I think it's hard to wrap reminder on this my coaster Holmes said it again yesterday that we are slowly trying to build that immunity throughout I think people saw it and they said there's no way that can be possible looking over the life of covin yes most of us will eventually get this that's just the way or we will get a vaccine one of the two things will happen for the vast majority of people and what we're trying to tell them is is that we're trying to craft something here in collaboration with health businesses best practices that can do something different the reason for the stay-at-home order or one of the reasons you've often articulated is buying time for the hospitals for you to prepare one oddity when I looked at the state website was that there was two thousand seven hundred seventy two ICN ICU beds available on April 6 today there's two thousand six hundred and thirty eight actually less for what reason I don't know but it raises a question has this time bought us what you want or has it all just been a ways no it has it has I would certainly if you look at it what we've done it falls into that spread of range because I think I want to be very careful you pick one number in there and everybody focuses rather than its broader it brings us to the bottom part of it but I also think as new evidence comes in I believe we're seeing this that we're spreading it out more but I want to remind Minnesotans the hardest days are ahead the climb is still up we are not near that peak yet but we do believe it's there but we have this conversation this morning with the healthcare executives to understand exactly how it is to continue to stay on top of that and continue to look for PPE but at this point in time I've heard other governors say this and this is this is my commitment I've told our team I cannot have a single person who needs an ICU bed or god forbid a ventilator not get that if it's going to be those are hard fights regardless so we have to make sure that that's there so at this point in time I am cautiously comfortable but I I'm not gonna kid you the fight for PPE and things is is still a fight the other side is is that we have the capacity on these alternate care Joe Kelly's done a great job with the Corps we're ready to expand out even more the question will be the workforce and we're still having that conversation of doing some things of how do we attract more workforce the question has come up about reciprocity from states that have excess workforce coming over those are very valid questions but I would tell them in people Minnesota today I am confident that we could deal with the surge as it comes if if we maintain all the smart things we've done so far on social distancing hand-washing follow that regard to ramping of testing you talked about yesterday and 20, 000 tests per day it would take are probably the better part of a year to test all Minnesotans that you've said critical workers and high-risk people would be prioritized for testing do you know how long it'll take to test all of those folks to get a baseline that's a good question which I should run the mouth on that Jan you and say anything on that C is a good quit it I really like the way you frame that up though about thinking about how big this task is and it also keeps you in mind when you hear people throw out numbers we acquired a million gloves we'll burn through that in a day so when you hear these numbers they sound big they're not and the same thing with testing we should as a nation have set a goal for you know a million I mean you do a million a day we're at it for a year and we're not even close we've done three million tests in total thanks I appreciate the opportunity to just clarify again we're not saying every Minnesota needs to be tested the goal is every symptomatic Minnesota needs to be tested and then we get smarter about the use of serology tests for helping do some population you know prevalence estimates that we don't really have right now all I've been able to say is we know the tested numbers are the tip of the iceberg and we need to get our hands around how big is that iceberg underneath but so the goal of testing every symptomatic Minnesotan we absolutely think can be met in the in the next I'm gonna just probably be wrong on this by a factor of something but at the rate that we're expecting to climb to climb up to you know I'm hopeful that we'll be able to like tomorrow start testing every Minnesotan that that or help get them to the point where they can get a test so it's not just if they go to one setting they're told well I can't test you we need to do better than that we need to get them to a place where they can get tested so that that infrastructure to get people access to the test when they need it is quickly being built I think we should be able to test all the symptomatic people again as they come through they're not all symptomatic on day one so the goal is to get to the point where every care provider can get their symptomatic patients tested you know really promptly with and we're hoping that we can achieve that within the next four weeks that every symptomatic person is able to get a test couple of questions for my colleagues job one is on the State Fair the GM is saying there's gonna be either a full fair or no fair are you both there or no fair at this point well I uh I think all of you know I the only person who loves the State Fair more than me as lieutenant governor Flanagan um those are you know that we have where my plan was I found out that Ohio the governor of Ohio years ago had a tradition and of course Mike DeWine came out because the Minnesota State Fair is much better than Ohio that is an objective statement and he knew that he said that the governor sleeps in the barn the night before it opens and I said oh yeah we're starting that tradition because then every governor calls me can sleep in the barn after that but this is important to Minnesota and and again we're coming closer to it we're gonna listen to the health experts we're going to put it on and again this is pains me pains me pains me the State Fair falls at the right of the dial I think we can all see that I think it's a pretty tough lift it's certainly at this point in time I wouldn't make a definitive call but I also don't want to give any false hope on this I think it'll be very difficult to see a State Fair operating and I don't know how you social distance in there I mean the one of the greatest parts of the State Fair is it's super crowded that your elbow to elbow with your neighbors that everywhere you go you just talk to somebody that's that's the charm of the Minnesota State Fair a lot of time unfortunately that is the worst thing for kovat nineteen control and so I I know they're looking at it at this point in time I I just think it's gonna be a hard lift but we'll hope the question from my colleagues here is about nursing homes we have 75% of our deaths are now long-term care facilities a couple of facility have had a dozen deaths apiece is there something the state could have done it especially those facilities that could have prevented that or mitigated that and why are we seeing so many deaths at nursing homes yeah yeah I think I you know she's taught me a lot on this obviously the congregate care also the age the underlying factors are part of that we have this conversation too about we have I believe still over half of those have one case this one is across the country this is where most of the deaths are happening and so I'll have you answer the question we ask ourselves that question too what can we do to alleviate that and are there things we should have done yeah yes it is a very fair question and I know how how frightening it is for for families to be thinking about this but keeping it in context I mean we and again I don't in any way mean to minimize the importance of kovat but you look at any of our our deaths to just excuse me death statistics and you'll see the same patterns with influenza and the like just as a function of age of underlying health conditions some of these patterns are sadly all too familiar one thing that we're going to have to do a better job of teasing out in the beginning and I am so grateful for this there are some care settings that are called as a matter of mission to say we will take Ovid patients as they come out of the hospital and we will take kovat patients that may be another facility isn't able to take the Kovan support support centers or settings are what we're calling them and they're being stood up around the state as we speak so some of the some of the concentration of cases may actually be intentional that where we're trying to create specialty settings for for folks to be and in terms of could we have done more you know what I can tell you is that it's it's certainly a challenge again it has to do with the the the workforce the pressures on the workforce we think that most of the spread is is introduced by healthcare workers coming in certainly the more recent cases after our visitor restrictions were put in place pretty stringently and that's just a real challenge and that's part of what we're the new problem we're having is the better job we do screening out ill workers the fewer workers there are to take care of the patients and and then we we have a different problem to try to help solve but I we we have a team from CDC in actually this week looking at and advising us on is there anything more we can be doing we've been ramping up the infection control practices there are teams of folks that check with those facilities every single day it's just it's just a really tough setting to manage but we're we're I'm eager to haven't seen the CDC report yet but I'm really anxious to know what else we could do it's a really good question and Theo I would add I think your answer to that is for all of us and again I I'll UMP all of us in decision making states and federally I do think we could have done some things if we'd had more PPE and more testing early on and we started that before it started getting hot and again that's not a blame because we're dealing with it now and I think every state and and federally that's what happened we got behind Dana Ferguson form news this is on behalf of the West Central Tribune could you please address the growing number of Ko in 19 cases at jennie-o and is the state advising action there at this time yeah and I may have labor and health come back up these are the things we worried about we knew that the congregate settings of of our processing plants was going to be a problem we see those numbers coming up I'm going to talk about the team that's out there and I would invite my colleague Nancy Leppink from labor and industry to join it you're right we're seeing more more questions more concerns about the surrounding counties it's Nobel's it's gotten its Kandiyohi i think we are trying to learn and and trans transmit the the lessons learned from from plants here in Minnesota but also in other communities to try to get ahead of Nancy and her team have been really great at thinking about what are some specific kinds of guidances for these very specific kinds of production facilities that we can anticipate and try to put in place now and she's done some great stuff to proactively try to seek information from them if you'd like to comment so earlier in the week we sent out well we've been making in-person contacts telephone contacts and email contacts but also have sent a letter to all of the meat processing plants in Minnesota one providing them with the guidelines that we developed with the Department of Ag and the Department of Health over the weekend but also then asking them to advise us as to the health status of their workers so that we can start to more quickly identify where there may be problems in these facilities so that we can then bring in health and other support for their businesses I think what we've learned is that you know this is an industry that it has in a kind of a pressure point because they are they're critical business they are meeting the needs of farmers who need their hogs and their chickens and their turkeys processed so I think what we've learned in that situation is though is that they cannot operate at the capacity that they were operating at and that they need to slow the lines they need to sequence their shifts they need to take longer on lunch you know transitioning from lunch breaks and and breaks and in and out of their facility and also to ramp up the health testing temperature changing and the health assessments of workers before they come in and also importantly they need to look at their incentives for people to come to work sick so this is another thing that those facilities have done now is they've changed their incentives they're actually working to incent their people to stay home when they're sick changing their benefit policies changing their access to leave so that workers are actually going to stay home when they're sick instead of feeling feeling the in Sun the coffin of suffering a consequence of not coming into work when they shouldn't so there's a recalibration as the the governor's been saying you know the dial was sort of full full throttle and if we work on some PPE we work on some barriers we do some of these things you know maybe we'll be good but we've learned in in that sector is that we weren't good and so we need to dial it back the department and the deed and health are committed to working with plants who come to us and ask for assistance and helping them develop that plan to to walk through all of the processes in their plants so that we can then most importantly keep them open but balance that with keeping their workers safe because all you have to do is lose half of your work fuller soon you're going to be closed anyway so what we need to do is you know calibrate that dial better for that industry working with our partner agencies agriculture health and the Department of Labor and of course deed Department of Employment and economic development plays a critical role with UI benefits and other things that also change the caliber help us do that calibration so that's where we've done you're putting a lot of trust in Minnesota businesses to put in these plans that we'll do social distancing they'll achieve what you want to achieve is there any enforcement mechanism or accountability mechanism to make sure that it's gonna happen yes my agency while we have a consultation unit that primarily focuses on providing assistance to small businesses when they come to us and ask them now particularly in the time of kovin 19 to work with them but we also have enforcement and my agency is also looking at how we can use our enforcement capacity to make sure that we have a presence in these workplaces to be looking at our work comp data so as we're seeing more we had 175 claims for workers compensation for kovat related diseases so we see those coming in as health sees issues in terms of clusters of workers but also as we identify industries that seem to be having more difficulty it's the intention of my agency to have a presence and to do inspections of those workplaces great like thank all the commissioners Bob Riggleman folks at Rydell skates thank you for making Minnesota your home thank you for articulating how important this is I think Bob you could you could feel the pride you can feel the emotion as you talked about this there's so many of you out there that that this matters to I also want to give a thank you of continuing to build community I I think about mayor's a lot and Mayor Dave kleiss out in Saint Cloud mayor's have a lot to do to hold their communities together they're thinking budgets they have to look at the state the state says we're looking at the federal government but they're the ones that actually have the rubber meets the road and Dave's doing a lot of things out there he and I talked about once a week but I noticed he did not tell me this but it's a great story he leads the sing-along of god Bless America out there in st.
cloud and I want to thank him for that and as we leave today it's it's an important day the the holy month of Ramadan is starting for our our Muslim Minnesota friends I want to wish you Ramadan Mubarak to all of you a blessed Ramadan and and understand that our communities are strong together this sense of what it means to be Minnesotan is shining through our sense of innovation perseverance decency to one another and I think what we're doing here is we are setting a standard for the rest of the country how to make sure that we're hitting that sweet spot in the middle of keeping people safe of keeping our hospitals ready to roll and thinking about those economic impacts and how we can do better so thank you all and we'll be back tomorrow to talk a little more on on education thank you thanks commissioners [Music] [Music].