LifeCare Medical Center is working with the Minnesota Department of Health and following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines in relation to the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
24/7 Coronavirus Screening hotline: If you are experiencing a fever, cough, or shortness of breath and have had close-exposure to persons with confirmed COVID-19, or have traveled outside the country, please call the Altru 24/7 Coronavirus Screening Hotline at 701.780.6358 before visiting an Altru location.
What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
- According to CDC, patients with confirmed COVID-19 have had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of:
- shortness of breath
- Some patients have had other symptoms including muscle aches, headache, sore throat, or diarrhea.
- These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure.
How long should I stay home if sick?
If you have symptoms of a respiratory disease (these include fever, coughing, muscle aches, sore throat, and headache), you should stay home for at least 7 days, and for 3 days with no fever and improvement of respiratory symptoms—whichever is longer. (Your fever should be gone for 3 days without using fever-reducing medicine.)
For example, if you have a fever and coughing for 4 days, you need to stay home 3 more days with no fever for a total of 7 days. Or, if you have a fever and coughing for 5 days, you need to stay home 3 more days with no fever for a total of 8 days.
If I have symptoms, when should I see a doctor?
If you have symptoms and can manage those symptoms at home, you don’t have to seek health care or be tested for COVID-19. Just stay home while you are sick. If you are older or have underlying medical conditions, it may be helpful to let your health care provider know you are sick. They may have some specific advice for you. Some people with COVID-19 have worsened during the second week of illness. If your symptoms worsen at any point, and you do need to go see a doctor, call ahead before going in.
What is the COVID-19 testing situation in Minnesota?
People who do not have symptoms should not be tested for COVID-19. Due to national shortages of lab testing supplies, we do not have an unlimited capacity for testing. We are currently prioritizing testing for people who are hospitalized and for health care workers. There may be some additional specific situations, such as congregate living, where testing is also recommended.
Where can people be tested?
Most clinics and hospitals across the state have the ability to collect samples (specimens) for lab testing. It is best to call your health care provider before going to the clinic or hospital to be tested. MDH does not directly collect samples for testing; we receive the samples from providers and do the testing in our public health laboratory. There are some commercial reference laboratories that can test. Your health care provider may conduct testing through these laboratories. If you are tested for COVID-19, the clinic that did your testing will get the results to you.
How does COVID-19 spread?
- The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- It spreads between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- It is also possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.
- People are thought to be most contagious when they are most symptomatic (the sickest).
- Some spread might be possible before people show symptoms (when they are asymptomatic); there have been reports of this occurring with this new coronavirus, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.
Take the same precautions recommended for avoiding colds and flu:
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough.
What is coronavirus?
- Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. They are estimated to cause about a third of all cases of the common cold.
- The most common forms can cause mild to moderate illness in people, while other forms circulate among animals, including camels, cats, and bats.
What is COVID-19?
- COVID-19 is a viral respiratory illness caused by a coronavirus that has not been found in people before.
- COVID-19 is not caused by the same coronavirus that caused Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003 or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in 2012. However, it is in the same family of viruses.
- Because this is a new virus, there are still things we do not know, such as how severe the illness can be, how well it is transmitted between people, and other features of the virus. More information will be provided when it is available.
Learn more about COVID-19 at CDC: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Frequently Asked Questions