Frederick Melo / St. Paul Pioneer Press
ST. PAUL -- When she discovered that shipments of face shields from a Maryland-based manufacturer were on three-week back order through Amazon.com, Maggie Sartori — a supply chain director for Allina Health — threw up her hands and resorted to Plan B. Sartori called up a manufacturer in Northeast Minneapolis, bought thousands of laser-cut sheets of thick plastic, and gathered dozens of Allina emploees. They stapled and glued 10,000 shields together more or less from scratch. It’s a strategy she expects to repeat.
ST. PAUL — Gov. Tim Walz last week issued a two-week stay-at-home order to help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus and buy some time for the medical community to acquire ventilators and prepare hospital beds and intensive care units. Will it be enough? Former White House adviser Andy Slavitt thinks not. Slavitt is an Edina resident and founder and board chair of United States of Care, a health policy initiative that now focuses exclusively on the coronavirus epidemic.
ST. PAUL — When M Health Fairview needed to designate a hospital for the sickest of patients infected with the coronavirus, administrators at Bethesda Rehabilitation Hospital in St.
ST. PAUL — Realtors, almost by definition, live to sell, but the St. Paul Area Association of Realtors is making an unusual request: Cool it. SPAAR, which is based in Maplewood, issued a public notice to its membership on Tuesday, March 24, asking Realtors not to host open houses in person. As of Monday, NorthstarMLS also suspended the listing of open houses through its database until further notice. In a statement, SPAAR President Patrick Ruble said the association is joining Minnesota Realtors and Minneapolis Realtors in calling for a time-out for an indefinite period of time.
ST. PAUL — Early April could be a turning point for the pandemic in Minnesota — depending on how seriously residents adhere to social distancing, according to a metro area doctor in a key emergency planning role. This week may be a relatively quiet in terms of hospitals fielding new cases of coronavirus, but “our anticipation is they’ll get tougher next week, and then really ramp up after that,” said Dr. John Hick, a physician at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. And how intense will that ramp-up be? “We can’t really give any good numbers on where this is headed,” he said.
ST. PAUL — Alarmed to discover that many of her co-workers had little knowledge of the proper way to put on emergency protective gowns and masks, critical care nurse Melanie Timpano walked the halls of her unit at St. Joseph’s Hospital in downtown St. Paul unbidden, offering instruction and support. “They weren’t fitted for N-95 masks, and they still aren’t,” Timpano said of her co-workers. “Where are the health care workers in Italy getting their full suits?” That was last Friday, but Saturday also was bad.
MINNEAPOLIS — More than a week ago, David Boulware had a eureka moment. The professor of medicine at the University of Minnesota thought to himself — what if a common, inexpensive, “old school” anti-malaria pill could help prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus? Virtually overnight, Boulware has assembled a team of 10 U of M medical scientists, statisticians and pharmacologists to test out his theory, which involves feeding a preventative medication that’s been around since 1955 to volunteers for five days.
ST. PAUL — Some doctors and public health experts call it the surge.
MINNEAPOLIS — Major construction on Minnesota 5 will cause significant delays for commuters heading to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport from April through October. How much of a delay? The Minnesota Department of Transportation is recommending that drivers give themselves an extra hour to arrive. The work will include rebuilding Minnesota 5 and repairing several bridges and ramps between 34th Avenue in Bloomington and Minnesota 62 near Fort Snelling.