MDH begins house-to-house COVID-19 survey across Minnesota

Households will be selected at random and participation will be voluntary.
Author:
Publish date:

The Minnesota Department of Health is hoping to get a better idea of COVID-19's prevalence in Minnesota through a statewide survey that includes free testing for the virus. 

MDH began conducting a Community Assessment for Public Health Emergency Response (CASPER) survey on Sept. 14 and will continue it through Sept. 30. 

“Through the CASPER survey, we hope to better understand how COVID-19 is spreading in Minnesota and how it is affecting people,” Dr. Ruth Lynfield, MDH state epidemiologist said in a news release. “With a new virus, we have to learn as we go and adapt our response based on new data.

"Information we gather in this survey will allow us to refine our recommendations to best meet the needs of our Minnesota communities in the prevention of COVID-19,” Lynfield added.

The survey, which is voluntary, includes a household questionnaire and free virus and antibody testing for the virus that causes COVID-19. 

There are five main goals of this survey. They are:

  • To understand how COVID-19 has spread
  • To understand what causes COVID-19 to spread in certain areas
  • To explore how COVID-19 transmission and infection rates differ in different parts of Minnesota.
  • To identify the percentage of people infected with COVID-19 but have no symptoms
  • To improve health messaging and help stop COVID-19's spread

Sign up for our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

What to expect

Teams of health professionals who will be wearing facemasks, vests and badges identifying them as the MDH COVID-19 Survey Team will visit randomly selected homes in 180 preselected areas, based on census blocks, around the state.

They'll ask if the household wants to participate in the survey. If they agree, one member of the household will fill out a questionnaire and everyone who lives there, if they consent, can get tested to see if they currently have the virus (a swab test) and/or for antibodies to see if they already had the virus (a finger stick). 

“We encourage people to participate in the survey if their household is selected. Along with being able to receive free, in-home testing for current and past COVID-19 infection, this is a unique opportunity for people to help us learn more about the impacts of COVID-19 and aid in our efforts to fight this pandemic,” said Lynfield.

Each household's survey and test results are kept private, and if anyone tests positive on either test they'll be notified by a nurse, who will provide more information. 

This CASPER survey was developed by the federal Centers of Disease Control and Prevention as an evidence-based tool to assess community needs. It's been used in other public health emergencies, including the Zika virus outbreak and after hurricanes and oil spills. 

Minnesota is among several other states that are also doing COVID-19 CASPER surveys. The state is paying for the survey with COVID Relief Funds MDH received to conduct the CASPER survey and other studies. 

Next Up

Ian Cole

Wild trade Greg Pateryn to Avalanche for Ian Cole

Cole won a pair of Stanley Cups in Pittsburgh and is a former first-round pick.

1024px-Hudson,_Wisconsin_9

St. Croix County GOP chair resigns after incendiary post on official website

John Kraft sparked controversy with his 'Prepare for War' post on the party website earlier this month.

ann kim

Ann Kim's new restaurant, Sooki & Mimi, to open in February

The James Beard Award winner is the brains behind Young Joni, Pizzeria Lola, and Hello Pizza.

Screen Shot 2021-01-19 at 1.32.19 PM

Firefighters rescue worker after trench fall in Rochester

The construction worker fell about 15 feet.

gray wolf

Grand Marais mayor's dog survives attack by wolves

He heard his 65-pound dog "screaming bloody murder" and then saw the wolves chasing her.

Screen Shot 2021-01-19 at 12.04.55 PM

Minnesota's COVID vaccine appointment site goes live

Huge demand was expected when the site went live at noon.

emily ford

Duluth woman is hiking 1,000-plus miles on the Ice Age Trail this winter

She could be the second person ever to finish a winter-thru hike of the Wisconsin trail.

coronavirus, covid-19, icu

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Tuesday, January 19

Two days in a row with fewer than 1,000 new cases.

Screen Shot 2021-01-19 at 10.52.12 AM

After fire destroyed their house, couple forced to euthanize beloved dog

The couple's daughter has launched a fundraiser for her parents.

Screen Shot 2021-01-19 at 10.16.14 AM

Investigation after teacher accused of lewd act during distance learning

No charges have been filed yet and the staff member has not been identified.

Related

social gathering

COVID-19: How will Minnesota's ban on social gatherings be enforced?

Gov. Tim Walz on Wednesday announced social gatherings of all kinds with people outside your household are prohibited for the next four weeks.

thanksgiving turkey

COVID-19: MDH's guidance for celebrating Thanksgiving during a pandemic

MDH's guidance for celebrating Thanksgiving this year asks people to avoid large gatherings and instead celebrate in small groups or with family.

coronavirus, covid-2, doctor, masks

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Sunday, July 19

More than 40,000 people in Minnesota no longer need to be in isolation after contracting the virus.

dinner-1733171_1280

MDH changes advice, says Minnesotans should skip Thanksgiving gatherings

"As tempting as it is to stick with our cherished traditions this year, we really need people to reconsider and frankly not gather with other households."

coronavirus, covid-2, doctor, masks

Health officials: Get a COVID-19 test if you went to bars in Rochester

This is especially the case for those who went to bars where people weren't wearing masks or staying 6 feet away from each other.