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COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Update Learn More

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

CentraCare care givers have been working around the clock for more than 20 months to care for you, your families and friends during COVID. We are committed to caring for every Minnesotan who needs us, and nothing will prevent us from doing so – even during these never-seen-before times.

The challenge of providing this level of care is that our hospital beds are often full. ERs in all of our hospitals are packed. And our clinical teams are exhausted. Early in the pandemic, our community stepped up in amazing ways to help us. We ask that you again join us in fighting this pandemic together.

How can you help?

  • Please get your COVID vaccines and booster shots. They are proven safe and effective in reducing COVID illness, keeping people out of the hospital, and preventing death.
  • If your situation is not an emergency, please use other care options, including:
  • If this is a medical emergency, call 9-1-1, or visit the ER.

Together, we can do this. Thank you for your support.

Ken Holmen, MD
President and CEO

New E-Cigarette Regulations and Free Signs for All Businesses

Published in Media Releases Author: CentraCare

ST. CLOUD, Minn. - Recent changes in state law have placed new regulations on the use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) in specific indoor spaces. As of July 1, 2014, e-cigarette use is prohibited in the following locations:

  • Licensed day care and foster care facilities
  • Health care facilities
  • Government buildings including those owned or operated by the state of Minnesota, any city, county, township, school district or any other political subdivision
  • Public universities
  • Department of Human Services-licensed facilities
  • Minnesota Department of Heath-licensed facilities subject to federal licensing regulations

If you own or operate a business within the state of Minnesota that is not included in the list above, you have the option to establish an individual policy restricting the use of e-cigarettes. “Studies have found e-cigarette vapor contains nicotine, heavy metals and other toxic compounds,” said John Schmitz, MD, medical director of the Tobacco Cessation Program at Centracare Health. “There have been no long-term studies conducted on e-cigarettes, so the lasting impact of those exposed to secondhand vapor is unknown.”

Crave the Change highly encourages individual organizations, cities and counties to update their policies to restrict the use of e-cigarettes in all public places. For free sample policy language and signs, please contact Alicia Bauman, 320-251-2700, ext 77527 or Sign orders can also be requested at

About Crave the Change

Crave the Change is an initiative of CentraCare Health that seeks to reduce tobacco’s harm across Central Minnesota through education, outreach and advocacy.