Health Information on COVID-19
Learn about COVID-19
- Questions and help
- Testing sites
- Cloth face coverings (masks)
- Materials, posters and videos
- Ramsey County daily situation update dashboard
Materials in other languages
Please refer to testing guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health.
Testing for students and those participating in sports
As of April 26, 2021, in order to continue sports and in-person learning, the state strongly encourages the following:
- All Minnesotans participating in organized sports should test every week.
- Every student in middle and high school, regardless of participation in activities, should test every two weeks.
- More information
The CDC believes that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 after exposure. Symptoms can include:
- Fever or chills.
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.
- Muscle or body aches.
- New loss of taste or smell.
- Sore throat.
- Congestion or runny nose.
- Nausea or vomiting.
If you are mildly ill with COVID-19, you can stay at home during your illness.You should restrict activities outside the home, except for getting medical care.
Call your medical care provider if you develop symptoms of COVID-19, have been exposed to a person with COVID-19, or if your symptoms get worse or become severe.
When to seek medical attention
If your illness gets worse or you notice any of these emergency warning signs for COVID-19, call your medical care provider right away. Emergency warning signs include*:
- Trouble breathing.
- Ongoing pain or pressure in the chest.
- New confusion or not being able to wake up.
- Bluish lips or face.
*This list is not all-inclusive. Call your medical care provider before going in. Tell them about your symptoms, and they will give you instructions to help protect you and other patients.
Immigrant and refugee communities
Anyone who is sick should seek medical care without fear, regardless of immigration status or ability to pay for health services.
Reporting COVID-19 infections: Employers
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is requiring all mandated reporters to report any cases of COVID-19 within one working day.
Who is required to report COVID-19 infections:
- Health care practitioners (health care facilities, medical laboratories, and in certain circumstances veterinarians and veterinary medical laboratories) are required to report disease to the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) under Minnesota state law.
- Unless previously reported, every licensed health care provider who provides care to any patient who has, is suspected of having, or has died from a reportable disease is required to report.
- Any person in charge of any institution, school, child care facility, or camp is also required to report disease to MDH.
Cases can be reported by fax or phone:
Health officials recommend taking the same precautions for COVID-19 as you would for avoiding colds and the flu:
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with your sleeve or a tissue, not your hand.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Put distance between yourself and others.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering when around others.
- Clean high-touch surfaces in your home regularly. More information
If you have been exposed to COVID-19, note the following:
- The safest option is to stay home and away from others for 14 days.
- In certain situations, you may end your quarantine after 10 days, or after seven days with a negative COVID-19 test result.
- You cannot end your quarantine before seven days for any reason.
If you have been vaccinated
If someone has completed COVID-19 vaccination (two doses in a two-dose series or one dose in a one-dose series) and is exposed, they do not need to quarantine if ALL of the following are true:
- The COVID-19 exposure was at least 14 days after their vaccination series was fully completed.
- The COVID-19 exposure was within 90 days of their final dose of the vaccination series.
- They do not currently have any symptoms of COVID-19.
For detailed quarantine guidance, please refer to the Minnesota Department of Health.
If you had close contact with a person with COVID-19 (an exposure), you need to stay home and away from others (quarantine).
In general, a close contact means being less than six feet from someone for 15 minutes or more throughout a 24-hour period. However, even shorter periods of time or longer distances can result in spread of the virus.
Stay Safe MN Guidance
Minnesota has begun safely reopening. As we return to work and activities we enjoy, we have a shared responsibility to look out for each other and save lives. Keeping businesses and other venues open will depend on all of us doing our part to stay six feet apart, wash our hands often, stay home when sick and wear a mask.
Guidance for individuals and families
Guidance for businesses and organizations
- Stay Safe Guidance - businesses and organizations
- What to do if an employee has COVID-19 (PDF)
- COVID-19 - When to return to work (PDF)
Guidance for holidays
- Safe Holiday Celebrations during COVID-19 - MDH
- Holiday Celebrations - CDC
- Ramadan and the COVID-19 vaccine - MDH
Guidance for schools
- Q&A: COVID-19 testing for middle and high school students (PDF)
- COVID-19 testing for kids and families - MDH
- COVID-19 Decision Tree for People in Schools, Youth, and Child Care Programs (PDF)
- Schools and Child Care: COVID-19 - Minnesota Department of Health
- Stay Safe Guidance - schools
- Stay Safe Learning Plan for the 2020-2021 School Year
Guidance for sports
- COVID-19 testing for Minnesota organized sports participants (PDF)
- Playing sports during COVID-19 (PDF)
- COVID-19 sports guidance for youth and adults (PDF)
- Youth sports and quarantine guidance (PDF)
- Stay Safe Guidance - sports
Guidance for travel
Guidance for K-12 schools: Fall 2021
Updated August 20, 2021
Saint Paul - Ramsey County Public Health fully supports the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding universal indoor masking for all of our K-12 schools.
- All teachers, staff, students and visitors to K-12 schools should wear a mask while indoors, regardless of vaccination status.
- Students should return to full-time in-person learning in the fall with layered COVID-19 prevention strategies in place.
- Students under 12 years of age should wear a mask in public spaces and around those who are not fully vaccinated.
Saint Paul - Ramsey County Public Health does not have the authority to mandate a mask policy for schools, but advises compliance with CDC guidance and strongly recommends that schools require masks. Ramsey County does have the authority and is currently mandating a mask policy for employees and visitors to county-run facilities regardless of vaccination status.
In Ramsey County, the level of community transmission of COVID-19 is currently rated as “High”. This means there are more than 100 new cases per 100,000 individuals based on the average over the past seven days (data map). When community transmission is “Substantial” or “High”, Ramsey County recommends masking for vaccinated as well as unvaccinated individuals. Ramsey County will reconsider masking recommendations when the seven day rolling average of community transmission is 50 or fewer new cases per 100,000 individuals.
Resources for the 2021-2022 school year:
- Guidance for COVID-19 Prevention in K-12 Schools - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Best Practice Recommendations for COVID-19 Prevention in Schools for the 2021-22 School Year - Minnesota Department of Health
- School and Child Care COVID-19 Best Practice Recommendations - Minnesota Department of Health
- COVID-19 Testing During the 2021-22 School Year - Minnesota Department of Health
- 2021-22 School Year Health Recommendations for Schools - Minnesota Department of Education
- COVID-19 Data Tracker – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention