By O. Kay Henderson, Radio Iowa
The number of COVID patients in Iowa hospitals has increased for the second straight week.
The Iowa Department of Public Health’s weekly report shows the COVID patient count in Iowa hospitals is 544.
More than a fifth of those patients are in intensive care. In the past 24 hours, 99 COVID-positive patients were admitted to an Iowa hospital.
A year ago, Iowa hospitals were dealing with more than 1500 COVID patients — the peak during the pandemic. On November 16th of last year, the governor delivered a rare statewide address, ordering restaurants to close at 10 p.m., limiting the size of crowds and urging Iowans to take precautions to stop the spread of the virus. By November of last year, officials had confirmed more than two-thousand Iowans had died of COVID.
Today, the death toll is more than three and a half times higher. By the middle of this week, state officials had confirmed 7268Iowans have died of COVID.
The total number of confirmed COVID cases is on the rise in Iowa, with more than nine-thousand Iowans testing positive this past week. Children under the age of 18 account for more than 20% of the week’s positive COVID test results.