The office of Gov Kim Reynolds reported early this evening, March 24, the first death in Iowa due to COVID-198. The individual was an older adult, 61-80 years of age, and a resident of Dubuque County.
“Our hearts are heavy with the first loss of an Iowan to COVID-19. The thoughts and prayers of our state are with the family during this difficult time,” said Gov. Reynolds. “I continue to urge all Iowans to protect their health and the health of others, especially older individuals and those with chronic health conditions who are most at risk. We all have a role to play in limiting the spread of this virus.”
At a press conference earlier this afternoon, Reynolds said that at this time, she isn’t ready to issue a “shelter in place” order like governors in neighboring Wisconsin and Illinois have. She said she’s watching data closely and will make a decision, if it’s needed, based on data. She said Iowa has “pockets” where COVID-19 is more prevalent, and that Iowa isn’t densely populated. “We aren’t New York,” she said.
She commended Iowans for voluntarily staying home, or close to it. Reynolds said the Department of Transportation did a recent traffic count that showed 50 percent fewer passenger vehicles on the highways than this time last year. “Iowans are listening and paying attention,” she said. “Thank you, Iowans. Thanks for listening and doing your best to be a part of the solution.”
The DOT also reported the same number of truckers on Iowa’s highways as this time last year. “Commerce is doing well. Truckers are getting food and supplies where they need to be,” the governor said.
The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) has been notified of 19 additional positive cases of Iowans with COVID-19, for a total of 124 positive cases as of Tuesday. There have been a total of 2,315 negative tests to date, which includes testing reported by the State Hygienic Lab and other labs.
According to IDPH, the locations and age ranges of the 19 individuals include:
Black Hawk, 1 middle-aged adult (41-60 years)
Buchanan County, 1 middle-aged adult (41-60 years)
Cedar County, 1 older adult (61-80 years)
Dallas County, 1 middle-aged adult (41-60 years)
Jasper County, 1 older adult (61-80 years)
Johnson County, 1 middle-aged adult, 1 older adult
Muscatine County, 2 older adults (61-80)
Polk County, 3 adults, 1 middle-aged adult (41-60 years), 1 older adult (61-80 years)
Poweshiek County 1 older adult (61-80 years)
Story County, 1 older adult (61-80 years)
Tama County, 1 middle-aged adult (41-60 years)
Warren County, 1 adult (18-40 years)
Washington County, 1 older adult (61-80 years)
Visit GCNO’s COVID-19 tab for information about how to take care of COVID-19 at home.