COVID-19 tests

This is a picture of CDC’s laboratory test kit for SARS-CoV-2 (also known as COVID-19 or coronavirus). CDC tests are provided to U.S. state and local public health laboratories and Department of Defense laboratories that were either previously qualified for being able to perform a similar type of test used to detect influenza or have been recently approved by their state public health laboratory for SARS-CoV-2 testing.

OSKALOOSA — There were 13 new cases of COVID-19 in Marion County Sunday, and six in Mahaska County, according to state data.

The 14-day positivity rate is back up slightly in Marion County. The state reported Sunday that 11.7% of COVID-19 tests have returned positive in the last two weeks.

In Mahaska County, the 14-day positivity rate is reported at 9.6%.

Statewide, there were 881 new cases of the disease reported in state data on Sunday morning. The number reflects the change in total from 10 a.m. Saturday to 10 a.m. Sunday.

In that period, there were 5,793 new individuals tested, 1 new death and 284 newly recovered.

The top-five counties in terms of case growth were Polk (111), Dubuque (86), Woodbury (48), Sioux (45) and Scott (42).

The coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is spread through respiratory droplets. It is often mild and some individuals remain asymptomatic or have only cold or flu symptoms. But the disease can be more severe, require hospitalization and lead to death, particularly in older or immunocompromised people.

Experts, including those at the CDC, say wearing masks when in public, keeping at least 6 feet of distance between people when possible, and good hygiene can prevent the spread.

The Oskaloosa Herald relies on data reported by the Iowa Department of Public Health, using its coronavirus data dashboard at Data is checked each day at 10 a.m. and then compared to the data previously captured from the dashboard to produce stories.

The state has changed how it reported the data several times, and local officials often produce data based on different standards or in different timeframes. Therefore, the data will not always align with other sources.

Kyle Ocker is the group editor of the Oskaloosa Herald and the Ottumwa Courier. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker.

Group Editor

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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