Recent content from Chris Serres
COVID-19 has created new barriers to voting for seniors who live in care facilities.
The emergency deployments to the Austin and Hibbing facilities reflect a severe staffing shortage amplified by the pandemic.
Lifting of the lockdown poses fresh challenges for many of Minnesota's 2,100 long-term care facilities, which are struggling to keep the virus at bay amid a troubling increase in cases across the region.
The state Department of Health ordered the testing last week after the Star Tribune reported that the agency had been sending inspectors into nursing homes and assisted-living centers without first checking them for the virus.
Some of the state's largest nursing homes and assisted-living communities have yet to open their doors to visits by family members and outside caregivers, despite new state guidelines.
The state's largest agency is shifting away from operating group homes. The budget cuts were disclosed in a memo to state employees.
The devices, also known as "point-of-care" tests, should help nursing homes move more quickly to treat infected residents and staffers, as well as isolate them sooner before they spread the virus to others.
State Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said the agency intends to start testing staffers who visit long-term care facilities.
NONFICTION: A New York Times reporter exposes how mining companies and their lawyers rigged a system to deny benefits to coal miners sickened with black lung.
Testing supplies have not kept up with surging demand, putting greater pressure on an already stretched system,