The first in a series of no-barrier COVID-19 testing organized by the Minnesota Department of Health will be held this week in Waseca. MDH Assistant Commissioner Dan Huff says there are still residents that want or need to be tested but are slipping through the cracks. "Some people don't have insurance and maybe don't know that testing is free. Others have heard rumors of people getting charged for related items. Others may have had bad experiences at doctor's offices and don't like going. And we also know of some who haven't met the criteria for being tested," said Huff. Testing will [...]
Health officials are saying it's more important this year to get a flu vaccination. Eric Weller is the coordinator for the South Central Health Care Coalition. "Get those flu shots," said Weller. "Because the signs and symptoms of flu and COVID-19 are very similar, receiving a flu vaccination allows health professionals to differentiate what you may have." Weller says its also important to stay home if you're sick, wash your hands and wear a face covering.
A Mankato man has been arrested in connection to a fire at a Mankato residence Friday night. Blue Earth County court records say 29-year-old Michael Tischler was charged with first-degree arson, theft, and second-degree burglary. Authorities say Tischler admitted in a recorded interview at the Public Safety Center to breaking into the home, starting a fire, and stealing a handgun from the home
The Minnesota State High School League announced football and volleyball will return this fall with competition beginning in mid-October. Can it be done safely? The question was asked of Minnesota Department of Health commissioner Jan Malcom. "The high school league has taken a thoughtful approach on the subject," said Malcom. "The season will definitely be influenced on what direction that pandemic takes from here." Malcom says the motivation to keep students healthy is two-fold. "We expect they will take all the safety measures they can so they can compete but also go to school." Said Malcom. The league's board of directors [...]
This week is National Farm Safety Week. "Farming is still one of the most dangerous professions," said Local Ag Expert Kent Thiesse. "When you look at the percentages of serious accidents and deaths farming still ranks towards the top of any profession." Thiesse says the week not only focuses on the physical aspect of farming but also the mental health of those in the industry. "Farming is your way of life, your family life, and your business," said Thiesse. "When you mix them together, and you don't have the separation, it can lead to some issues." Thiesse says farming has one [...]
Authorities are looking for a Mankato man wanted on several charges after an incident earlier this week. Blue Earth County Court Records say 22-year-old Keontae Jones was charged with second-degree assault with dangerous weapon, threats of violence, first-degree damage to property and intentional discharge of a firearm that endangers safety. Authorities say the incident stemmed from an argument over a bet on an NBA game. The court report said Jones allegedly pointed a gun at an individual and fired several rounds causing damage to a car. A warrant has been issued for Jones' arrest.
Over the past two weeks, Blue Earth county's COVID-19 cases per ten thousand residents have reached a level that distance learning would be recommended according to the state's safe learning plan. What about the school districts that encompass multiple counties? The question was asked of Minnesota Department of Health Commissioner Jan Malcom. "We do suggest that the county with the highest (COVID-19) prevalence should be the basis for the discussion," said Malcom. MDH Infectious Disease Expert Kris Ehresman says they've been in close contact with the Mankato Area Public School District. She says the cases per ten thousand numbers are designed [...]
Mankato schools have released more information about the COVID-19 positive released yesterday. School officials say through contact tracing they've determined the individual at Mankato West High School who tested positive was not positive during the time when they were at school. The district is reminding residents to wash hands often with soap and water, cover coughs and sneezes and avoid touching your face, stay home if you're sick, and frequently clean all commonly touched areas, to minimize the spread.
Local Ag expert Kent Thiesse says conditions as of now are set for a good corn harvest. Thiesse says one problem producers may have is a good one to have in the big picture. "If the crop ends up bigger than expected, they might have trouble finding room to store all of the corn," said Thiesse. "We could see corn piled on the ground if we have big yields. We haven't seen that in a few years since we haven't had that big of yields." Last year there was a shortage of LP gas which wreaked havoc with the harvest, but [...]
Waseca County With the Highest Rate of COVID-19 Cases/10,000 Residents in Minnesota, Blue Earth County Third
Waseca county currently has the highest rate of COVID-19 cases per ten thousand residents in the state and Blue Earth county ranks third in the state in that category. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, Waseca County has 72.84 COVID-19 per ten thousand residents and Blue Earth County has 57.3 cases per ten thousand. Those totals are the average number of cases between August 23rd and September fifth. The state's safe learning plan says anytime a county has 50 or more COVID-19 cases per ten thousand, distance learning is recommended for all students.