MOORHEAD — Minnesota residents may soon receive a visit from a public health professional and be asked to take a survey about their pandemic habits. Public health professionals will also offer an optional COVID-19 test.
Teams from the Minnesota Department of Health are randomly selecting homes to visit throughout the state this month. The survey aims to learn how the disease is spreading throughout specific communities. On-the-spot COVID-19 nasal tests will also be offered, as well as antibody tests. All tests are optional.
Their questions will ask about things like the person's distancing practices, if they are working from home and how often they attend gatherings.
"It gives us really good data on what is happening, and it's a somewhat different piece of the puzzle than looking at some of our diagnostic test data," explained Stephanie Yendell, Minnesota Department of Health's senior epidemiology supervisor.
Residents will also be asked "what kinds of settings they're spending time in, and things they want to hear more about from the health department," Yendell said. "So that really helps us with some of our messaging."
The teams plan to visit 180 cities in the state. In each city, they will go door to door until seven households participate.
Some of the Red River Valley cities they will visit include Moorhead, East Grand Forks, Barnesville and Hitterdal. They will also visit lakes area cities like Detroit Lakes and Park Rapids.