News

New cases of COVID-19 in Southeast Iowa

Gov. Reynolds says Washington County has nursing home outbreak, additional businesses shut down.

Gov. Kim Reynolds said that Washington County is one of the locations of a nursing home with a COVID-19 outbreak.

She said the county is one of three in the state experiencing an outbreak within a long-term care facility. The others are Linn and Tama Counties.

During her daily news conference on Monday, she said she expected COVID-19 to hit long-term care facilities hard and she mentioned it was the reason why nursing homes limited visiting and access at the beginning of COVID-19 coming to Iowa.

“We knew they would be the most vulnerable based on the data we were receiving,” Reynolds said during the conference. “That’s why we took very significant measures early on to limit access and mitigate the effect of COVID-19 on vulnerable Iowans.”

Currently, Washington County has 52 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with three new cases on Monday. The individuals who tested positive are identified as an adult (18-40 years), a middle-aged adults (41-60 years) and an older adult (61-80 years.)

There is also one new case of COVID-19 in Henry County. One adult (18-40 years) tested positive for the illness.

Statewide there have been 78 additional positive cases according to the Iowa Department of Public Health. The total number of cases in Iowa is 946 as of Monday. There were also three new deaths in the state on Monday. The individuals who died were identified as an older adult in Linn County (61-80 years) and two elderly adults in Tama County (81+ years)

“The last week has been especially hard,” Reynolds said. “Unfortunately, we expect this week will be equally, if not more, difficult.”

There have also been an additional 680 negative tests for a total of 10,653 negative tests to date, which includes testing reported by the State Hygenic Lab and other labs according to IDPH.

Additionally, Reynolds ordered more businesses to be closed through the end of the month to help fight the spread of COVID-19. She did not call for a shelter-in-place.

“We need to stay home and we need to be responsible,” Reynolds said during the news conference.

The order extends through April 30 and is in addition to businesses that have already been ordered to be closed.

The new closures include: malls, social and fraternal clubs, bingo halls, bowling alleys, pool halls, zoos, arcades, amusement parks, libraries, skating rinks and skate parks, outdoor/indoor playgrounds and children’s play centers, race tracks. tobacco and vaping stores, toy, music, gaming, instrument, and movie stores, and campgrounds.

Individuals who don’t follow the guidelines can be cited with a simple misdemeanor, the governor said.