Senator Matt Klein Calls on Minnesota Health Officials to Reject Trump Administration Directive on Coronavirus Data

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Trump administration ordered states to bypass the Centers for Disease Control and instead send coronavirus hospitalization information to a new, private central database under the control of the administration. The move will limit the publicly available information about the infection rates of the virus throughout the country, harming efforts by public health experts to fight the virus. In response, Senator Matt Klein (DFL-Mendota Heights), released the following statement calling on Minnesota’s public health community to ignore this request.

“I am asking all Minnesota hospitals and the Minnesota Department of Health to disobey the Trump administration’s order to divert data on COVID hospitalizations from the CDC to their own internal operations. As a hospital physician and a proud member of the hospital care community in Minnesota, this is a moment for us to demonstrate our integrity, our courage, and our commitment to the truth.

This data grab is the next step in what has been a steady political effort to suppress or cast doubt on the facts about COVID-19 in our country. As of today, 138,000 Americans have died of this illness. I’ve cared for some of those souls, and for many more–of all ages– who have suffered through long and damaging hospital stays from which they may never fully recover. It is staggering to realize that other peer countries, like Germany, have successfully reduced new deaths from COVID-19 to close to zero. 

Unable to envision or implement a national plan that does the same, the Trump administration continues to double down on smoke and mirrors fictions about COVID-19. I won’t amplify them by repeating them here, but these efforts will be vastly empowered by control over hospital data, which will allow Trump to spread the lie that nobody is suffering or dying from the pandemic. It makes our job as caregivers much more difficult, but more importantly, it will lead to needless suffering and death for thousands of Minnesotans. I ask the leaders of the Minnesota Hospital Association and the Minnesota Department of Health to join me in protest and noncompliance with this order.”

Matt Klein represents Senate District 52 which includes the area spanning parts of Eagan, Inver Grove Heights, Lilydale, the city of Mendota, Mendota Heights, South St. Paul, Sunfish Lake, and West St. Paul.

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