St. Louis County offers guidance for anyone attending large gatherings

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Public Health & Human Services Dept. • 320 West Second Street, Suite 605 • Duluth, MN 55802
Phone: (218) 726-2096 •

Linnea Mirsch



October 2, 2020

CONTACT: Dana Kazel, Communications Manager

218-725-5049 (office) • 218-591-2219 (cell)


St. Louis County offers guidance for anyone attending large gatherings

The news that President Donald Trump has tested positive for COVID-19 a day after visiting Duluth, provides opportunity to remind everyone about quarantine and testing recommendations, as well as other precautions people should take if they've participated in a large gathering.


Guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that the highest risk of exposure for a person is if they are within close contact (six feet or less) for 15 minutes or more with someone who is contagious.


"Based on the 'six feet for 15 minutes' assessment, the likelihood of someone in the audience catching the virus from someone on stage is fairly minimal," said Amy Westbrook, St. Louis County Public Health Division Director. "However, with an estimated attendance of at least 3,000 people at the rally, there's a pretty good likelihood that some of the attendees had the virus and were contagious, so as we would with any event, we strongly encourage participants to quarantine, monitor themselves for symptoms and consider getting tested."


The incubation time for COVID-19 is two to 14 days, with the majority of cases developing symptoms within five to seven days. People who are not showing symptoms should wait to be tested until at least five to seven days after exposure, or should get tested a second time after 14 days. A COVID test is a point in time indicator, so if a person is tested too soon, their result may be negative even though they could be infected.


People who are symptomatic must quarantine and should contact their medical provider to discuss next steps. Anyone with symptoms who does not have a provider can find a testing location near them on the State of Minnesota's COVID-19 Response website. Additionally, there are several free community testing events, including one that St. Louis County Public Health will be offering in Ely, next week. Details on those events and how to register can be found on the MDH Community Testing web page. A third option is the free saliva testing site available at the DECC. Details and registration information for this is also available on the MDH site.


Links to all of these sites, as well as other information on St. Louis County's response to COVID, and the online COVID-19 dashboard, can be found at