Virus Outbreak College Testing

James Robson, a biomedical engineering graduate student, holds a swab and specimen vial in the new COVID-19, on-campus testing lab, Thursday, July 23, 2020, at Boston University in Boston.

OTTUMWA — With testing yet to rebound from a Thanksgiving and weekend lull, Iowa still added 1,906 new cases of the coronavirus between Monday and Tuesday.

Another 24 deaths were added to the The Iowa Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 data dashboard between Monday and Tuesday.

Not included in the new deaths tally were four more deaths in Wapello County, which were announced late Monday by local officials. That brings the county’s death toll to 89, according to local officials. There were two deaths above 80 years old, one above 70 years old and one above 60 years old.

There were 12 new cases of the coronavirus in Wapello County residents, according to the state data. The number of active cases fell slightly to 836, with 54 more recoveries reported from the county.

A long-term care outbreak at the Good Samaritan Society in Ottumwa was removed from the state’s data dashboard, signaling the end of the outbreak. Outbreaks end once facilities go 28 days without a new case.

In Jefferson County, the outbreak at the Sunny Brook Living Care Center added 20 new COVID-19 cases, according to state data.

Jefferson County added 11 new cases in the last day, while there were five new cases in Appanoose. There were three new cases each in Davis, Monroe and Van Buren.

Hospitalizations grew locally and statewide. State data reports that, as of Sunday, there were 18 Wapello County residents hospitalized.

In Iowa, 1,172 are in the hospital with COVID-19, with 235 in an intensive care unit. There were 129 new admissions in the last 24 hours.

There were another 4,589 Iowans tested and another 5,223 recoveries reported.

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.

Those wanting to be tested can visit testiowa.com to schedule a test at the Ottumwa Test Iowa Clinic.

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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