Testing taking place at Long Prairie Packing amid several reported cases

The Long Prairie Packing Plant (part of American Foods Group) had two tents set up on Thursday and Friday, May 21 and 22, in the parking lot for COVID-19 testing that was taking place at the plant in cooperation with Lakewood Health System and Todd County Health and Human Services.

Todd County has seen an increase in confirmed cases of COVID‐19.

Testing has begun at Long Prairie Packing among employees of the plant. Todd County Health & Human Services is working in partnership with Lakewood Health System and Long Prairie Packing to test all employees for the SARS CoV2 virus, the virus that causes COVID‐19. The purpose of the testing is to find those workers who are infectious with the virus and to isolate them by having them stay home to limit the spread of the disease in the plant and the community.

To date, 170 employees were tested Thursday, May 21 and an estimated 160 more were tested on Friday, May 22.

Employees who were tested received their results from Lakewood Health System within 48 hours. If their results were positive, they were required to isolate themselves until their symptoms have improved, it has been at least ten days from their first symptom, and three days without fever.

Employees who tested positive, but have no symptoms, were required to isolate themselves for ten days from the test date. Their household contacts were advised to self‐quarantine for 14 days and monitor for symptoms.

Employees who tested negative may continue to work, but must undergo rigorous screening at the worksite. This screening includes a temperature check and a series of questions about COVID‐19 symptoms.

Plant officials have been cooperating fully with health officials on the response to cases in the plant.

“The health and safety of employees is a concern for all of us,” said Todd County Health & Human Services Director Jackie Och.

“Our number one priority is the safety of our employees and the community of Long Prairie. We are thankful to Lakewood Health System and Todd County Health & Human Services for their support,” said Jennifer Dibbern, Public Communications for American Foods Group.

Todd County staff continue to work with local partners and the Minnesota Department of Health staff on case investigations, contact tracing, business outreach, and essential service requests for individuals in isolation or quarantine.

For more information go to: https://www.co.todd.mn.us/coronavirus‐disease‐2019‐covid‐19.

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Benning Printing & Publishing, inc.