Confirmed: MN's first COVID-19 patient was on Grand Princess cruise ship

The ship has been held off the coast of California for days.

In an update to the news that Minnesota has its first confirmed case of coronavirus, health officials now say they know where the case originated. 

On Friday, Gov. Tim Walz and the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) announced that an elderly Ramsey County resident who had recently been on a cruise had tested positive for COVID-19.

Later that same day, the department revealed that the patient was aboard the Grand Princess, the cruise ship quarantined off the coast of California, per the Pioneer Press. 

The paper notes that the person apparently left the ship — which had recently sailed to Mexico — before it was put under quarantine this week.

Though the vessel has been in a holding pattern offshore, Vice President Mike Pence (who's leading the U.S. government's efforts against coronavirus) has said it will be allowed to dock at a non-commercial port this weekend.

Meanwhile, the Minnesota coronavirus patient is currently in quarantine at home and said to be recovering, as health officials work to identify anyone who may have come in contact with the person. 

Following the announcement of Minnesota's first case, efforts to contain its spread in the state have ramped up, while Minnesota health insurance network UCare announced it would be waiving any fees associated with coronavirus testing for its members:

Blue Cross of Minnesota made a similar announcement Friday evening:

There are more than 330 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the United States as of Friday evening, with 17 confirmed deaths.

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

Next Up