In just over two months, more than 15,000 Iowans have tested positive for COVID-19, the respiratory illness caused by the novel coronavirus.
With a new coronavirus “dashboard” that shows aggregate test results in real time and the state discontinuing daily updates on case numbers, Iowans will no longer find straightforward daily statistics on the pandemic, as the data will constantly change.
In the past 24 hours, Iowa’s confirmed cases of COVID-19 increased by 341, to 15,296 as of 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 19, 2020. The state’s first presumptive positive cases were reported March 8.
With 12 deaths in the past 24 hours, so far, 367 Iowans have died of COVID-19. Of those, 204 deaths have been linked to outbreaks in long-term care centers.
As of this morning, 37 outbreaks have been reported in nursing homes statewide.
Ringgold County, in southern Iowa, reported its first confirmed COVID-19 case this morning, leaving just Decatur County, also in far southern Iowa, as the only one of Iowa’s 99 counties with no positive cases so far.
In the past 24 hours, 28 new patients with COVID-19 have been hospitalized, with 383 Iowans currently hospitalized, up one from yesterday; 126 are in intensive care units, up from 121 on Monday, and 83 are on ventilators, also up one from yesterday.
State epidemiologist Dr. Caitlin Pedati pointed out a new section on serology testing on the state’s website during Governor Kim Reynolds’ press conference on May 19.
Serology tests use a blood sample to detect antibodies.
“We don’t know how well these antibodies work and we don’t know how long they last,” Pedati said, citing the tests as part of an effort to better understand the virus, especially as recovered patients return to work.
She said Iowans should continue to practice social distancing, frequently wash their hands and stay home when ill to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Iowa just reported its first two cases of a pediatric syndrome associated with COVID-19.