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Governor Walz’s most recent shutdown order became effective overnight. He seized control of the public relations this week by taking over each of the press briefings usually run by the Minnesota Department of Health. He concluded with a bang yesterday, convening a briefing on mental health issues exacerbated by the shutdown and related restrictions. He also hosted several guests from mental health services along with Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan and Commissioner of Human Services Jody Harpstead and MDH Commissioner Malcolm. 

My favorite bumper sticker is Support Mental Health or I’ll Kill You and listening to Governor Walz freewheeling at four press conferences this week has not done much for my own peace of mind. That much I can tell you. If you live in Minnesota and need help, please do check out the press briefing (audio below). Resources are available. The state has set up a text crisis line that can be reached at MN 741741.

The epidemic continues its current surge. The authorities attributed 68 new deaths to COVID-19 in the data released yesterday. Forty-four of the deaths occurred among residents of long-term care facilities. The fatalities skew heavily to the elderly and infirm. (The age distribution is accessible here at the MDH Situation Update. Most decedents were in their 80’s and 90’s.) Although the MDH “5-point battle plan” to combat spread of the disease in nursing homes appears to have come a cropper, this subject has gone unmentioned at the press briefings this week.  read more at Powerline (used with permission)

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