CORONAVIRUS

Another daily high for coronavirus cases in Iowa

Gov. Kim Reynolds has attributed the spike in postive testing cases for COVID-19 to more aggressive testing. Above, the
Gov. Kim Reynolds has attributed the spike in postive testing cases for COVID-19 to more aggressive testing. Above, the governor gives an update during a news conference at the Iowa National Guard in Johnston on Friday. (Bryon Houlgrave/Des Moines Register)

The Iowa Department of Public Health reported another one-day high for positive coronavirus tests Saturday, after businesses in 77 counties were allowed to reopen Friday.

Five more deaths also were reported, for a total of 175 statewide.

According to a Saturday news release, 757 additional positive cases were reported — an increase of 18 from a day ago and bringing the state total to 8,641.

Two of the deaths were reported in Linn County, another in Tama County and one each in Polk and Woodbury Counties. All five were older adults between the ages of 61 and 80.

Linn County has had 705 positive cases out of 3,770 people test, while 409 people have recovered, the Department of Public Health said. Forty-seven deaths due to the coronavirus have been in Linn County, accounting for about 22.9 percent of the statewide total.

The release stated 87 percent of the new reported positive COVID-19 cases were from 22 counties that remain under restrictions, which is a slight jump from Friday’s numbers.

Black Hawk, Dallas, Polk and Woodbury Counties accounted for 493 of the 757 new cases.

Saturday marked a second consecutive day with record-highs in positive cases, which was reported at 739 Friday.

The trend isn’t a surprise with the high volume of tests processed during the week.

Gov. Kim Reynolds attributed the spike to more aggressive testing. During her daily briefing Friday, she said she expected to see a rise in case counts as the State Hygienic Lab in Coralville caught up with processing samples.

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Accelerating Iowa’s testing capacity, Reynolds said, caused a backlog at the state lab and this was common for new testing.

The Department of Public Health also reported 3,377 negative tests, for a total of 41,085 from the State Hygienic Lab and other labs.

Although the number of positive cases grew, the percentage dropped from the previous day, according to Gazette tabulations.

On Saturday, 18 percent of the 4,134 tests were positive. Of the 2,926 reported tests Friday, 25 percent were positive.

There are 353 Iowans currently hospitalized and 3,156 have recovered from COVID-19, according to the Department of Public Health. At this time, one in 63 Iowans have been tested.

Top 10 Iowa counties in total cases of positive tests

1. Polk — 1350

2. Black Hawk — 1251

3. Woodbury — 1074

4. Linn — 705

5. Marshall — 545

6. Dallas — 515

7. Johnson — 487

8. Muscatine — 360

9. Tama County — 278

10. Louisa — 277

Counties with double-digit increases or more in positive cases

1. Polk — 174

2. Woodbury — 152

3. Dallas — 107

4. Black Hawk — 58

5. Marshall — 45

6. Linn — 32

7. Jasper — 20

8. Dubuque — 16

9. Muscatine — 14

10. Johnson — 12

11. Wapello — 10

Comments: (319) 368-8679; kj.pilcher@thegazette.com

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