Virus numbers start to decline in Jones County

Board of Supervisors
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

     Public Health Coordinator Jenna Lovaas updated the Jones County Supervisors on the COVID-19 facts and figures during the Dec. 1 board meeting.

     At that time, Jones County’s 14-day positivity rate was 26.7 percent.

     “It’s looking better,” reported Lovaas.

     Then in JCPH’s weekly update released on Dec. 4, the positivity rate was down to 26 percent.

     Among the positive cases in Jones County, 828 stemmed from the Anamosa State Penitentiary. There are also 16 hospitalizations and 31 deaths (18 from long-term care facilities, five from the prison, and eight from the general population).

     Lovaas also shared that the state is not counting long-term care deaths statewide with the total death count due to COVID. She explained that long-term care residents are tested with an antigen (rapid) test, and the state is not counting deaths of people who only had the antigen test.

     “Apparently they are positive enough to be counted in our case counts, but not in our death counts,” Lovaas commented. “Which means there is likely a massive undercounting of deaths statewide.

     “There is a lot of angst about this among my counterparts across the state, and some discussion about finding ways to push harder/force the state to change their counting methods,” continued Lovaas.

     The CDC announced an additional option of reduce the length of quarantine for contact between people with COVID-19:

     • Quarantine can end 10 days after the last exposure without testing AND if they have had no symptoms of COVID-19

     • Quarantine can end seven days after the last exposure if the individual in quarantine is tested on day-five AND receives a negative test result, AND if they have had no symptoms of COVID-19

     In addition, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced last week some positive news concerning the virus. Vaccines from two different companies, Pfizer and Moderna, will soon be made available in Iowa. The Pfizer vaccine is 95 percent effective The Moderna vaccine is 94.5 percent effective.

     There will be 26,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine will be distributed on Dec. 13. On Dec. 20, 31,000 doses from Pfizer and 54,000 from Moderna. On Dec. 27, 38,000 from Pfizer and 24,000 from Moderna.

     Within the first three weeks in December, a total of 95,000 doses from Pfizer and 77,000 doses from Moderna will be made available.

     Those receiving the vaccine first and foremost will be healthcare/frontline workers and residents of long-term care facilities.


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