COVID-19 infections and deaths climb in Iowa nursing homes

By: - January 28, 2022 11:31 am

This digitally generated image shows different variants of COVID-19 cells. (Image via Getty Images)

The number of COVID-19 infections in nursing homes continues to soar in Iowa, and now stands at 1,533 – more than four times the number reported two weeks ago.

Federal data show that over the past week, an additional 461 nursing home residents were diagnosed with COVID-19, and five residents died of the virus.

The Iowa Department of Public Health said this week that as of Jan. 25, there were 86 Iowa nursing homes that were in outbreak status. Those outbreaks have so far resulted in 1,533 infections of staff members and residents.

The data shows that over the past week, the number of nursing home outbreaks in Iowa increased 36%, and the number of infections increased almost 87%.

Just two weeks ago, there were only 41 outbreaks and 378 infections in Iowa nursing homes. The current numbers are still well below the levels seen in November 2020, when there were 4,327 infections associated with 119 outbreaks in Iowa nursing homes.

The biggest current outbreak in any Iowa care facility is at the state-run Iowa Veterans Home. Last week, there were 55 infections associated with the current outbreak at the home. This week, the home reported 90 infections, an increase of 64% in seven days.

This is the seventh outbreak at the Iowa Veterans Home, which has had more outbreaks than any other Iowa care facility. The six previous outbreaks at the Marshall County home resulted in at least 212 infections.

A quarter of veterans home workers have refused vaccine

While 96% of the residents at the Iowa Veterans Home have been fully vaccinated, about 24% of the staff have refused the vaccine, according to data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

During the pandemic, seven residents of the Iowa Veterans Home have died of COVID-19, according to the CMS.

The biggest trouble spots for care-facility infections continue to be Linn County and Black Hawk County. In Linn County, there are seven facilities in outbreak status, an increase of one over the past week. In Black Hawk County, there are eight facilities in outbreak status, the same number reported last week.

The Iowa Department of Public Health defines a nursing home outbreak as a facility with three or more active infections among the staffers and/or residents. The department says it does not track or report outbreaks and infections in state-licensed assisted living centers.

Nationally, Iowa has one of the highest vaccination rates among nursing home residents, with 93% of all residents fully vaccinated. Only seven other states have a higher vaccine acceptance rate among care facility residents. However, only 78% of Iowa’ nursing home workers are fully vaccinated. There are only 16 other states that have a lower percentage of vaccine acceptance among care facility workers.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 14,159 Iowa nursing home residents have contracted COVID-19, which is an increase of 471 resident infections from last week. A total of 2,638 of Iowa nursing home residents — five more than was reported last week — have died of the virus, according to CMS.

Here’s a look at the 86 Iowa nursing homes with current, active infections, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health:

Allamakee County — Good Samaritan Home of Postville: 11 infections.

Benton County — The Vinton Lutheran Home: Six infections.

Black Hawk County — Harmony House Health Care Center: 13 infections.

Black Hawk County — Martin Health Center: 15 infections.

Black Hawk County — NewAldaya Lifescapes: 79 infections.

Black Hawk County — Northcrest Specialty Care: Seven infections.

Black Hawk County — Pillar of Cedar Valley: 39 infections.

Black Hawk County — Pinnacle Specialty Care: 16 infections.

Black Hawk County — Ravenwood Specialty Care: Seven infections.

Black Hawk County — The Suites of Western Home Communities: 22 infections.

Boone County — Madrid Home for the Aging: 10 infections.

Bremer County — Denver Sunset Home: 7 infections.

Buchanan County – ABCM Rehabilitation Center of Independence West Campus: Four infections.

Buena Vista County — Methodist Manor Retirement Community: Eight infections.

Calhoun County — Good Samaritan Home of Manson: Six infections.

Carroll County — Thomas Rest Haven: Four infections.

Cedar County — Cedar Manor Nursing Home: Six infections.

Cedar County — Mechanicsville Specialty Care: 22 infections.

Chickasaw County — Linn Haven Rehab & Healthcare: 37 infections.

Crawford County — Denison Care Center: Seven infections.

Dallas County — Arbor Springs of West Des Moines: Eight infections.

Dallas County — Perry Lutheran Home: Eight infections.

Des Moines County — Azria Health Prairie Ridge: Three infections

Dubuque County — Stonehill Care Center: Six infections.

Dubuque County — Sunnycrest Manor: 17 infections.

Emmet County — Valley Vue Care Center: 10 infections.

Fayette County — Grandview Healthcare Center: 19 infections.

Franklin County — Rehabilitation Center of Hampton: 22 infections.

Fremont County — The Ambassador of Sidney: 29 infections.

Harrison County — Dunlap Specialty Care: Eight infections.

Harrison County — Longview Home: 17 infections.

Henry County — New London Specialty Care: Seven infections.

Henry County — Parkview Home: 14 infections.

Henry County — Savannah Heights: 26 infections.

Henry County — Sunrise Terrace Nursing & Rehabilitation Center: 20 infections.

Howard County — Evans Memorial Home: 16 infections.

Iowa County — Rose Haven Nursing Home: Seven infections.

Jasper County — Newton Health Care Center: 17 infections.

Jefferson County — Sunny Brook Living Care Center: 46 infections.

Jones County — Anamosa Care Center: 19 infections.

Keokuk County — Manor House Care Center: 20 infections.

Kossuth County — Algona Manor Care Center: 37 infections.

Lee County — Mississippi Valley Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center: 29 infections.

Lee County — The Madison: 11 infections.

Lee County — West Point Care Center: 11 infections.

Linn County — Heritage Specialty Care: 45 infections.

Linn County — Hiawatha Care Center: 46 infections.

Linn County — Living Center West: 23 infections.

Linn County — ManorCare Health Services of Cedar Rapids: 20 infections.

Linn County — Northbrook Manor Care Center: 20 infections.

Linn County — Oakview Nursing & Rehabilitation of Marion: 17 infections.

Linn County — Winslow House Care Center: 32 infections.

Marshall — Iowa Veterans Home: 90 infections.

Monona County — Elmwood Care Center: Three infections.

Montgomery County — Good Samaritan Home of Red Oak: Eight infections.

O’Brien County — Community Memorial Health Center: Six infections.

Plymouth County — Akron Care Center: Five infections.

Polk County — Altoona Nursing and Rehabilitation Center: Eight infections.

Polk County — ManorCare Health Services-West Des Moines: Six infections.

Polk County — Parkridge Specialty Care: Five infections.

Polk County — Trinity Center at Luther Park: 17 infections.

Polk County — Wesley Acres: Five infections.

Pottawattamie County — North Crest Living Center: 19 infections.

Pottawattamie County — Risen Son Christian Village: 43 infections.

Poweshiek County – St. Francis Manor: 10 infections.

Scott County — Davenport Lutheran Home: 17 infections.

Scott County — Good Samaritan Home of Davenport: 16 infections.

Scott County — Kahl Home for the Aged & Infirm: 56 infections.

Scott County — ManorCare Health Services-Utica Ridge: Nine infections.

Shelby County — Salem Lutheran Home: 19 infections.

Sioux County — Hegg Memorial Health Center: 15 infections

Sioux County — Sioux Center Health Royale Meadows: 48 infections.

Story County — Bethany Life: 21 infections.

Story County — Northridge Village: Nine infections.

Tama          County – Westbrook Acres: 22 infections.

Wapello County — Good Samaritan Home of Ottumwa: Four infections.

Warren County — Carlisle Center for Wellness & Rehab: Five infections.

Warren County — Norwalk Nursing and Rehabilitation Center: Six infections.

Warren County — Regency Care Center: 13 infections.

Washington County — Halcyon House: Six infections.

Washington County — Pleasantview Home: 33 infections.

Webster County – QHC Fort Dodge Villa: Six infections.

Winnebago County — Lake Mills Care Center: Five infections.

Woodbury County — Westwood Specialty Care: 12 infections.

Worth County — Lutheran Retirement Home: 22 infections.

Worth County — Manly Specialty Care: Eight infections.

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Clark Kauffman
Clark Kauffman

Deputy Editor Clark Kauffman has worked during the past 30 years as both an investigative reporter and editorial writer at two of Iowa’s largest newspapers, the Des Moines Register and the Quad-City Times. He has won numerous state and national awards for reporting and editorial writing. His 2004 series on prosecutorial misconduct in Iowa was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting. From October 2018 through November 2019, Kauffman was an assistant ombudsman for the Iowa Office of Ombudsman, an agency that investigates citizens’ complaints of wrongdoing within state and local government agencies.