Allina Health, including the New Ulm Medical Center, is restricting visitor access to its facilities due to the current surge in COVID-19 infections. The restrictions, which Allina refers to as “red visitor status” went into effect on Tuesday, January 11. A red visitor status means that no visitors will be allowed, with limited exceptions.

The change comes after more than 100 staff members per day were removed from work because they either tested positive for the virus or were awaiting tests and results.

Allina says the current surge of the virus has “sharply increased” pressure on communities and on the already-strained healthcare system, which is already dealing with staffing shortages.