Additional COVID-19 cases in Iowa, additional deaths confirmed

DES MOINES — State officials said Sunday that Cass County had recorded its first positive case of COVID-19 while 199 cases were reported over the weekend and 10 deaths state-wide.

No details were provided on the age or health status of the individual in Cass County which has been one of the last Southwest Iowa counties to report a positive case, while being virtually surrounded by positive cases, including 12 in Pottawatomie County and six in Shelby. Officials were not surprised that the virus would eventually be detected in Cass County and cautioned residents to continue to practice good hygiene and practice social distancing.

“While this is Cass County’s first case, it may not be the last, and that’s why we encourage all residents to continue to make prevention a priority,” said Cass County Public Health Director Beth Olsen.

Olsen reiterated the actions state officials have been pushing since the onset of the pandemic including:

• Staing at home as much as possible. Leave only for essential errands like groceries or getting medication. When you run these errands, send only one person from the household, if possible.

• Stay home when even mildly ill (the kind of illness that normally wouldn’t prevent you from your everyday activities)

• Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow/upper arm.

• Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

On Saturday the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) reported 122 additional positive cases in the state and three deaths — in Crawford, Johnson and Madison counties.

There were 77 positive cases reported on Sunday with 1,587 positive cases. Seven deaths were reported with six from Linn county and one from Washington county — all were reported to be 61 years-old or older.

Despite the high number of deaths over the weekend, officials note that most of who contract the virus will experience mild to moderate illness. Mildly ill individuals do not need to go to their healthcare provider or be tested to confirm they have COVID-19. Sick Iowans should stay home and isolate themselves from others — including those in their house until:

• You have had no fever for at least 72 hours (that is three full days of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers) and;

• other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved) and;

• at least 7 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared.

If you think you may need healthcare, call first. Your provider can assess whether you need to be seen in the office or if you can recover at home. There may also be options for you to talk to a medical provider from home using technology.

For up-to-date information on COVID-19, visit the IDPH webpage at https://idph.iowa.gov/Emerging-Health-Issues/Novel-Coronavirus and follow the department on Facebook at @IowaDepartmentOfPublicHealth and on Twitter at @IAPublicHealth.

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