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Minnesota faces a ‘COVID blizzard.’ What does that mean?

Minnesota, like other Western states, is seeing a COVID-19 surge right now

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A nurse picket in Faribault, Minnesota.

A nurse with frosted eyelids in subzero weather is pictured on Friday, Feb. 12, 2021, in Faribault, Minn., during a health care worker protest over a shortage on protective masks.

Jim Mone, Associated Press

A “COVID blizzard” is currently hitting the state of Minnesota, prompting officials to call on people to take precautionary measures against the coronavirus.

What is a COVID blizzard?

Minnesota health commissioner Jan Malcolm said Wednesday that all unvaccinated people need to get the COVID-19 vaccine to stop the spread of the virus, per Bring Me The News.

  • She called the recent surge of cases a “COVID blizzard.”
  • “Right now we find ourselves in a really truly alarming spike in cases in recent days,” she said.

Will the COVID blizzard get worse?

Malcolm said cases, hospitalizations and deaths will rise because of the new spike since there are so many people who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19, according to Bring Me The News.

  • We need all Minnesotans to recognize the fact that in a pandemic storm like this one caused by the delta variant, individual decisions have implications. Implications not only for the person but for their families, their communities and in fact the entire state,” she said.

It’s unclear when the new spike will end.

  • “Every day now we’re seeing dozens of Minnesotans dying from an illness that they didn’t have to get, and that is beyond heartbreaking for all of us doing this work.” Malcolm said, according to CBS Minnesota. “The tragedy of this current spike in cases is that more than ever we have the tools and the knowledge to minimize the impact of this virus.”

How to stay safe from COVID-19

Malcolm said people who are eligible for the COVID-19 booster shot should get their new jab of the vaccine, per KARE-11.

  • “It does wane over time and we think that a lot of the breakthrough cases we’re seeing in Minnesota, and other states are among people who were vaccinated the earliest,” said Malcolm.