The omicron variant of COVID-19 has been detected in Iowa. (Image via Pxhere.com)
Community spread of the coronavirus is now low in Iowa, according to a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention rating system that is meant to guide the safety precautions residents take in public.
State health officials reported on Wednesday just 720 confirmed new COVID-19 cases in the past week for the entire state, or about 103 per day on average. That’s down from more than 5,000 per day during the peak of the omicron variant surge in January.
The CDC uses infection rates and hospitalizations to measure community spread on a county-by-county basis. It reported low spread in nearly all of Iowa in its latest report on Thursday, with the exception of Appanoose and Davis counties in far southern Iowa, where there was medium spread. The rate of infection reported by the Iowa Department of Public Health has continued to decline since the last CDC report.
There are still small pockets of Minnesota and Missouri where the spread is high and the CDC recommends people wear masks at public, indoor places.
There were 67 people infected by the coronavirus receiving inpatient treatment at Iowa hospitals on Wednesday — about half the number of a week ago — according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Of those, 11 people were under intensive care.
Also on Wednesday, the state reported 53 new deaths among infected people in its weekly report. It was unclear when those deaths occurred because such reports are often delayed by more than a month. A total of 9,402 people have died in Iowa after contracting COVID-19.
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