COVID-19

This is an image of the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19, the disease that flared in Wuhan, China, in late December.

OSKALOOSA — In the last 24 hours, Iowa has added more than 4,800 new cases of the coronavirus — 33 of those in Marion County and 16 in Mahaska County.

Data from the Iowa Department of Public Health showed another 25 Iowans have died with COVID-19.

Iowa added 4,830 new cases of the coronavirus between 10 a.m. Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday, according to state data.

The state also hit a record for hospitalizations for the seventh straight day, with 1,261 in the hospital with COVID-19 as of Saturday morning. There are 246 patients in an intensive care unit, which is also a record. In the last 24 hours, 217 patients were admitted with the virus.

Active cases in Marion County continue to grow, up to 544 as of Saturday morning. In the last two weeks, an average of 25.% of COVID-19 tests taken by Marion County residents has returned positive.

That’s five times the rate experts from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say an area is a hot spot.

As of Saturday morning, Mahaska County had a 14-day positivity rate of 22.1% and its active case count grew to 418.

There were 10,526 individuals tested for the first time around the state between 10 a.m. Friday and 10 a.m. Saturday, with 1,049 new recoveries reported in that time span.

Since the pandemic reached Iowa in March, there have been 180,253 Iowans test positive for COVID-19. Of those, 107,540 have recovered and 1,972 have died. There have been 1,089,768 Iowans tested for the virus at least once, according to state data as of Saturday morning.

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 coronavirus.iowa.gov. 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 kocker@oskyherald.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker.

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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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