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Hagedorn under observation after testing positive for COVID-19

First District congressman says symptoms are mild, but precautions are taken due to his cancer treatment.

050721-AIRPORT-RUNWAY-IMPROVEMENT-03328.jpg
U.S. Rep. Jim Hagedorn speaks during a groundbreaking event for a $79.2 million runway improvements project in May at the Rochester International Airport.
Joe Ahlquist / jahlquist@postbulletin.com
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ROCHESTER — Rep. Jim Hagedorn is receiving care at Mayo Clinic after testing positive for COVID-19.

Minnesota's 1st District congressman, who was was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney cancer in 2019 and reported its return last year, said announced the confirmed test in a news release Tuesday, Jan. 4.

"I did receive the vaccination and gratefully I am experiencing very mild symptoms," he said in the announcement, adding that receiving treatment and observation was recommended by the Mayo Clinic doctors treating his cancer.

"I will work with the professionals at Mayo until it is safe for me to return to my home in Blue Earth or travel to work in Washington," he said.

Congress is adjourned right now with plans to return to session on Monday, Jan. 10.

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If the congressman remains isolated for 10 days after being tested or informed of a positive result, he is unlikely to return to the House floor until the middle of next week.

However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently shortened the recommended time for isolation for people with COVID-19 to five days, if their symptoms have resolved. The shortened period is expected to be followed by five days of masking when around other people

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It is unclear what prompted Hagedorn to be tested, or when and how he might have contracted the virus. His staff did not return calls seeking additional information.

Olmsted County Republican Chairman Chris Brandt said he had no additional information regarding the congressman's condition.

"Our only official comment would be 'get well soon,'" he said.

In his statement, Hagedorn said he plans to continue his work while dealing with COVID.

“Today’s news will not stop me from fighting for America and the people of Minnesota’s First Congressional District," he said.

Randy Petersen joined the Post Bulletin in 2014 and became the local government reporter in 2017. An Elkton native, he's worked for a variety of Midwest papers as reporter, photographer and editor since graduating from Winona State University in 1996. Readers can reach Randy at 507-285-7709 or rpetersen@postbulletin.com.
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