Dubuque COVID-19 cases continue to rise between young adults

Published: Jul. 10, 2020 at 6:34 PM CDT
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DUBUQUE, Iowa (KCRG) - For bartenders like Kelly Williams at Dubuque’s Lot One, reopening has been a blessing.

”Business has bounced back nicely,” he said. “Not quite to our numbers, we had seen prior to the shutdown, but it has been encouraging to see a lot of familiar faces and people feeling more comfortable with coming back out to the public.”

Since reopening, Williams said the limits on things like social distancing have loosened at the bar.

”We see all demographics here,” he mentioned. “We see a lot of young college kids who have nothing else better to do.”

That is one reason health officials are worried. Mary Rose Corrigan, a public health specialist with the Dubuque County Public Health Department, said community spread, especially from young people going out, is behind a rise in COVID cases.

”From what we are hearing and learning, the cases in Dubuque County can be attributed to community spread and being out in the community not knowing they had COVID or being asymptomatic and spreading it that way,” she said.

The county is now reporting that over half of the positive cases are from people in the 18-40 age group.

Corrigan said there is a silver lining, though.

”The trends we have not seen is a huge spike in hospitalizations, which is a really good thing,” she mentioned.

But that could change.

”We usually do not see that secondary spread from a source until two to three weeks after they test positive,” she explained. “We have to be on guard in the next few weeks to watch for more vulnerable populations, elderly, those with chronic underlying conditions who may get the virus and who may actually become a lot sicker than the younger population has been.”

For that reason, Corrigan hopes businesses get stricter on social distancing, remembering the virus is far from gone.

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