The Minnesota Department of Health has released new guidelines regarding visitations in long-term care facilities. MDH Commissioner Jan Malcom says things have improved in those settings.

“Only a quarter of them have ever had an outbreak and over 90 percent of facilities have had no cases in the past 28 days,” said Malcom.

The new guidelines provide a matrix for those facilities to open based on COVID-19 case numbers in the surrounding community, the number of active, confirmed cases among facility residents, staff and visiting service providers, and whether staff is working at other long-term care facilities. Malcom says they’re trying to achieve a balance.

“Balancing safety and visitation restrictions in a priority to limit unintended harms of social isolation,” said Malcom.

The new guidelines will go into effect on August 29th.