COVID-19

OTTUMWA — Wapello County officials said Thursday that three more residents have died due to COVID-19, pushing the county’s total to 36 since the pandemic began.

The Wapello County Public Health Department said in two separate announcements Thursday afternoon that one person between the ages of 18- and 40-years-old had died. The other two deaths were individuals between the ages of 61- and 80-years-old. Officials did not release any additional information about the individuals.

The local public health department cases continue to grow, particularly in the 18-40 age range in the county. They advise community members to social distance and wear a mask when in public.

New cases of the COVID-19 disease in Wapello County came in a baker’s dozen Thursday. Meanwhile, cases continued to grow at a local long-term care facility in Ottumwa.

Data from the Iowa Department of Public Health, as of 10 a.m. Thursday, showed an increase of 13 new cases in Wapello County.

The outbreak at the Good Samaritan Society long-term care facility in Ottumwa continued to grow. Thursday afternoon officials there reported there had been 35 residents and four staff members test positive for COVID-19. Since the outbreak began, three residents who tested positive for COVID-19 have died. Two staff members have recovered.

“Good Samaritan Society-Ottumwa continues to take extra precautions, and is using vigorous infection control measures,” said interim administrator Stacy Bernard in a statement released to the Courier Thursday. “The health, safety and well-being of our residents, staff and the community we serve remains our top priority.”

Wapello County currently has 107 active cases, according to state data.

Statewide there were 501 new cases of the COVID-19 disease reported and seven new deaths as of 10 a.m. Thursday. The death in Wapello County was announced after that time.

There were 679 new recoveries reported statewide, and 6,938 new tests.

Appanoose, Monroe and Van Buren counties each added one new case on Thursday.

To date, there have been 929 cases of the COVID-19 disease in Wapello County, with 789 patients recovered, according to data from the Iowa Department of Public Health.

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.

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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