North Dakota continues to lead the nation in new coronavirus cases per capita.  Another day has passed, and more records broken.  We now have more people hospitalized in the state with COVID-19, than ever before. Here's the latest numbers from the North Dakota Department of Health. They're not pretty. Surprisingly, we do not lead the state in new cases here in Burleigh county. We've had that dubious title for most of the last month.

 

The Governor's press conference on October 1st had an incentive, so to speak, if you wear a mask. According to a press-release from Bismarck Public Schools today. The North Dakota Department of Health announced a change in guidelines regarding individuals identified as close contacts to a positive COVID-19 case. This change in guidance no longer requires identified close contacts to quarantine if both parties were properly wearing a mask during the time of exposure. Instead, individuals identified as close contacts will be directed to self-monitor and only quarantine if they become symptomatic. This is a very impactful change for the entire state, but for school districts in particular, as it now allows for healthy students and staff members that are following proper mask-wearing protocol to stay onsite unless they begin to exhibit symptoms.

However, If the individual identified as a close contact lives in the same household as a positive case, the close contact must complete the required quarantine prior to returning to school or work.

So, the gist of the message.  Even if you don't agree with wearing a mask, it could save you some quarantine time.