Situation Update for Tuesday, May 5

Posted at 11:20 a.m.

This article will be updated, as needed, if more information becomes available.


The Minnesota Department of Health is reporting an additional 617 cases of COVID-19 and an additional 27 deaths. That brings the total to 7,851 positive cases and 455 deaths. Of those deaths, 368 were related to long-term care or assisted living facilities.

Another 402 have recovered to the point they no longer need to be isolated, bringing the total out of isolation to 4,614. An additional 2,068 tests have been completed in a single day, and since testing began in Minnesota, 88,009 have been completed.

Governor Tim Walz and Minnesota Management and Budget Commissioner Myron Frans will provide an update on the State’s response to COVID-19 and discuss the new budget projection. The public can  watch the briefing on the Governor’s YouTube Live page here. The Governor is anticipated to ease restrictions on elective surgeries.


Sanford Bemidji briefed Bemidji City Council on the situation during the regular meeting Monday. Read more about that here.

MDH records Beltrami County at still six cumulative cases, but Sanford officials yesterday confirmed that all of those cases have recovered to the point they no longer need to be isolated, and all were connected to travel to communities with spread, or confirmed contact with a positive COVID-19 patient.

Asymptomatic positive cases in itasca county

Itasca County confirmed yesterday they have 22 laboratory cases among its residents, with several tests still pending. MDH reports Itasca County at 13 cases today, but there have been numerous circumstances where local public health confirms case numbers before MDH does.

Minnesota Department of Health has identified Itasca County as the site of a congregate care outbreak at The Emeralds at Grand Rapids. Marc Halpert, chief operating officer of the facility’s management company, Monarch Healthcare, issued the following statement:

“First off, we would like to thank the Grand Rapids and Itasca County community for all of their support during this difficult time.   Additionally, we would like to thank our family members, our residents and tenants, but certainly our staff.   Over the past week, we have been fighting to stop the spread of COVID-19 and have been able to prevent it from many.

“At this time, we do have eight staff members that have tested positive, all asymptomatic.   We also have six residents currently in-house with COVID, all on one unit, and all but one are asymptomatic.   We look forward to keeping all of our residents, tenants, and staff safe.   Thank you.”


The Beltrami County COVID-19 Response/Recovery Team needs Health Care/Behavioral Health Professionals and Workers! A roster of volunteers is being developed for Isolation & Quarantine Sites, Long Term Care facilities, Alternate Care Sites, and other needed sites, etc. 

Volunteer opportunities from support services to direct care will be managed by the Minnesota Responds for both licensed and unlicensed volunteers. For more information: Go to Minnesota Responds ( to register.

“Hope for the best; prepare for the worst.” Should the current resources be adequate, volunteers will not be needed. However, should the needs exceed available resources, it is critical that volunteers be ready to step in. 

other announcements

The Frohn Eastside Cemetery Association’s annual meeting, previously scheduled for Sunday, May 17, is cancelled because of the COVID-19 situation.


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University. You can follow along with Larissa's live tweets of meetings and events on Twitter!

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