Minnesota to get 3rd federal emergency medical team

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Gov. Tim Walz announced Thursday the state will get a third emergency federal medical team to support hospitals.

A team of 14 doctors, nurses and hospital staff from the Department of Health and Human Services is scheduled to arrive in Minnesota on Friday and deploy to M Health Fairview Southdale Hospital in Edina to help with COVID-19 treatment and patient care. The team is expected to stay for at least two weeks, with an option to extend.

The state already has two emergency staffing teams from the Department of Defense helping staff members at Hennepin County Medical Center and St. Cloud Hospital.

"Minnesota’s frontline health care workers continue to tirelessly treat patients sick with COVID-19. I am so grateful for their dedication, and I want to thank the Biden Administration for providing emergency staffing support to help the great doctors and nurses at M Heath Fairview Southdale," Walz said in a statement. "There are simple things Minnesotans can do to keep themselves safe, healthy, and out of the hospital. Get vaccinated if you haven’t yet. Get your booster if you are due. Get tested and stay home if you feel sick. The last thing Minnesota hospitals need right now is more COVID-19 patients – and the last thing any Minnesotan should want is to be hospitalized with this dire disease."

On Wednesday, Minnesota hospitals reported 1,549 patients hospitalized for COVID-19 and 345 patients in intensive care.

Thursday’s announcement came after the Minnesota Department of Health also confirmed the first case of the COVID-19 omicron variant in the state.