Coronavirus, COVID 19

A nurse holds swabs and test tube to test people for COVID-19 at a drive through station set up in the parking lot of the Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich.

OTTUMWA — There were a dozen new disease cases confirmed in Wapello County, state data showed Sunday.

The Iowa Department of Public Health between 10 a.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. Sunday reported 12 additional cases of COVID-19 in Wapello County. There were 50 new tests reported over that time span. The 14-day positivity rate was 9.6%.

Elsewhere in the Courier coverage area, there were three new cases reported in Appanoose and two in Monroe. Davis, Jefferson and Van Buren counties saw no additional cases reported.

Statewide, there were 814 new cases of the disease reported. The biggest increase in cases for counties was in Polk, with 151 new cases. There were 45 new cases in Woodbury, 40 in Pottawattamie, 37 in Linn and 32 in Dallas.

Iowa reported two new deaths, 188 new recoveries, and 5,690 new tests. On Sunday, the state passed a testing milestone with 700,472 Iowans having been tested for the disease since the pandemic began in March.

Since last Sunday, the number of confirmed cases in the state has increased by 6.6%, with the state reporting an additional 4,605 cases in the last week.

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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