COVID-19

OTTUMWA — While the state added 611 new cases of the COVID-19 disease Monday morning, Wapello had just three new cases.

The number of new cases is the change in total positive cases reported from 10 a.m. Sunday to 10 a.m. Monday by the Iowa Department of Public Health.

The positivity rate went down a few more points in Wapello County, to 12.4% in the last 14 days.

The rate went down in all but one of the counties in the Courier's coverage area. Appanoose was the lone increase, though the rate remains a low 6.3%. In Monroe County, which has boasted the highest area rate, was down to 12.8% on Monday. The rate declined to 6.8% in Davis County, and 3.2% in Van Buren and Jefferson counties.

There were four new cases of the disease reported in Appanoose Monday and three in Davis. The case counts in Jefferson, Monroe and Van Buren counties were idle.

In Iowa, here were two new deaths reported, 409 new recoveries and 7,315 new tests reported Monday.

Over the weekend, the state added roughly 27,000 prior antigen test results to the site for the first time.

The top-five counties in terms of growth Monday were Woodbury (58), Linn (53), Polk (46), Dubuque (40), and Sioux (31).

The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is spread through respiratory droplets. It is often mild and some individuals remain asymptomatic or have only cold or flu symptoms. But the disease can be more severe, require hospitalization and lead to death, particularly in older or immunocompromised people.

Experts, including those at the CDC, say wearing masks when in public, keeping at least 6 feet of distance between people when possible, and good hygiene can prevent the spread.

The Ottumwa Courier relies on data reported by the Iowa Department of Public Health, using its coronavirus data dashboard at coronavirus.iowa.gov. Data is checked each day at 10 a.m. and then compared to the data previously captured from the dashboard to produce stories.

The state has changed how it reported the data several times, and local officials often produce data based on different standards or in different timeframes. Therefore, the data will not always align with other sources.

Kyle Ocker is the group editor of the Ottumwa Courier and the Oskaloosa Herald. He can be reached at kocker@ottumwacourier.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker.

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Kyle Ocker is a Centerville native and award-winning multimedia journalist. Kyle is currently the first vice president of the Iowa Freedom of Information Council and vice president of the Iowa Print Sports Writers Association.

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