Dr. Osterholm checks in on COVID-19 during protests, other nations


The Director for the Center of Infectious Diseases at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Michael Osterholm, spoke with Dave Lee on WCCO-Radio this morning about COVID-19 and what they are seeing in Minnesota. 

Dr. Osterholm talked about the positive results that Iceland and New Zealand are seeing. Countries that are islands have closed their borders and have been able to test its population vigorously because they had access to early testing. Minnesota did not have early access to testing and being landlocked makes it harder to close borders. 

Even though it may be harder for the state to stop the spread, Minnesota announced on Sunday that there were 388 confirmed COVID-19 cases. This is the second-lowest daily total since April 28. 

However Dr. Osterholm also mentioned that this is what we are seeing from the previous two weeks. The virus itself can take two weeks for infection to start and for cases to spread. The protests that have been taking place across the Twin Cities in response to the death of George Floyd leave doctors unaware of what is going to happen with the number of cases. 

“We just don't know, we’re waiting to see,” Dr. Osterholm said. 

What Dr. Osterholm does know, is that the virus is still a threat and something to be taken seriously. 

“This is a very complex disease,” Dr. Osterholm said. “This virus, when it's in our bodies, goes all the way from a mild infection to really not even realizing you're infected with it to these very severe cases and deaths.”