All classes are cancelled through April 10 due to the CoVID-19 pandemic.

CoVID-19 Information (Updated 3/27/20)

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if I have been "exposed"?

This is not always black-and-white and is likely to change over time. 

The CDC currently considers full PPE (including gown, gloves, eye protection, and N-95 mask or respirator) to be protective and this would not be considered an exposure regardless of the extent of contact with the individual.

Visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-risk-assesment-hcp.html and scroll down to "Table 1" for the current CDC recommendations regarding risk-stratification of other possible exposures, and recommendations for monitoring and/or quarantine.  These are simply guidelines, so please verify with your HR department or occupational medicine clinic for your agency's specific recommendations.

What do I do if I think I was exposed to someone with confirmed or suspected CoVID-19?

If appropriate PPE was utilized and you are asymptomatic, first responders may continue to work after an exposure and continue to use the recommended PPE.

If COVID-19 related symptoms develop, first responders should contact the nurse triage line (phone number in this document) and pursue testing at one of our drive up clinics or a respiratory clinic and may return to work based on the following:

  • Symptoms have been resolved for at least 3 days (fever, cough, sore throat).
    --AND--
  • It has been at least 7 days since the onset of symptoms.
What do I do if my family member tests positive for CoVID-19?

Determining "workability" is generally outside of the duties of the EMS medical director.  This typically falls to your agency's human resources department and occupational medicine clinic.  You can contact the nurse line or your clinic for advice, but generally what is happening right now if you have a family member at home that tests positive or have traveled to a level 3 country in the last 2 weeks (nobody is traveling anymore so this is obsolete), you should isolate and quarantine at home for 14 days.

Who can get tested for CoVID-19?

Drive-through testing sites are coordinating testing for the following:

  • Symptomatic patient-facing healthcare workers
  • Symptomatic EMS professionals and first responders
  • Symptomatic patients in a congregate living situation
  • Symptomatic family member who lives in the same household of a patient-facing healthcare worker
  • Asymptomatic patient on dialysis

Everyone seeking testing needs to first call an appropriate nurse triage line to be assessed prior to being tested.

Can I reuse my facemask?

If you are wearing a mask to protect others from your respiratory droplets, then yes (until it is visibly soiled).

A simple surgical mask can be re-used for an entire shift as long as it is not involved in an aerosol-generating procedure or visibly contaminated.

An N-95 mask can be re-used unless it becomes visibly soiled, damaged, or contaminated.  Many people are wearing a surgical mask over the N-95 to further protect it.

Is there a specific call-in line or other resource we can give to patients that we do not transport for further questions?

MN Department of Health CoVID-19 Hotline:

Health questions:
651-201-3920 or 1-800-657-3903
7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Schools and child care questions:
651-297-1304 or 1-800-657-3504
7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

-Or- they should be instructed to call the care line for their clinic or insurance company, as most healthcare systems are prepared to handle these calls.

Should we still be getting patient's signatures?

No.  Document that you were unable to obtain signatures due to the current pandemic, as well as the key points of any conversation you had which are typically covered by the signature.

What is the temperature threshold for when our staff should leave their shift or stay home?

The medical definition of a fever is anything 100.4 or higher.  That said, individuals should contact the nurse line or their occupational medicine clinic for any temperature greater than 100.0.

Are vomiting and/or diarrhea considered symptoms of CoVID-19?

No, not at this time.  There are case reports of GI symptoms associated with CoVID-19, but we are not currently recommending that isolated GI symptoms be considered high-risk.

Law Enforcement Guidance