ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Department of Health has released new visitation guidelines for long-term care facilities.

The guidance provides a cautious approach to ensure residents have more social interaction, while making sure congregate living facilities keep residents safe from COVID-19.

MDH says the new factors will be based on if there has been a COVID-19 exposure in the facility from a resident, staff member or visitor within the past 28 days, the case rate in the surrounding community, the size of the facility and the extent to which staff members are working at other long-term care facilities.

The new guidance will take effect on August 29th.

Since March, visitor restrictions have been in place in long-term care settings to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

According to The Minnesota Department of Health 1,250 of the states 1,660 deaths related to COVID-19 have come from long-term care facilities.

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