Iowa hospital officials seek action, warn of overloads, as virus cases soar

Hospital bed.
Hospital bed.
Published: Nov. 2, 2020 at 3:35 PM CST
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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The number of people being treated for the coronavirus in Iowa hospitals continued to soar, prompting doctors and hospital officials to warn their facilities and staff could be overwhelmed without serious efforts to curtail the virus spread.

Data from the Iowa Department of Public Health indicated 1,469 new confirmed cases Monday and 17 additional deaths reported in the past 24 hours. That follows a weekend in which more than 2,800 new cases were reported each day. Iowa’s seven-day average rate of positive coronavirus tests is now third in the nation behind South Dakota and Wyoming.

Health care professionals say increased hospitalizations typically follow higher positive case rates, an indication that Iowa hospitals could soon be overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients.

A record-high 718 patients were in Iowa’s hospital system due to COVID-19, as of Sunday evening, including 156 in intensive care units.

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