Today’s NewsStand

Today’s NewsStand

By Iowa Hospital Association|
|July 1, 2021

Iowa news

How many coronavirus cases, deaths occurred at Iowa nursing homes?

When the coronavirus reached Iowa in March 2020, few sectors of the state were hit harder than its nursing homes. Nearly 10% of the state’s nursing home population of approximately 25,000 succumbed to the disease. Older populations were more susceptible to complications from the virus, and the close, communal living conditions amplified its spread. More than a third of state’s 6,000-plus COVID-19 deaths were nursing home residents. (Des Moines Register)

Clayton County rural hospitals make changes to services, buildings due to COVID-19 lessons

MercyOne Elkader Medical Center’s CEO said the hospital is one of the smallest in Iowa, which means staff worried about how they would be able to serve Clayton County’s 18,000 residents in a pandemic. “Being small has its set of challenges,” CEO Brooke Kensinger said. “Thinking about how to plan for and prepare for a surge knowing we had 25 beds in a very small facility.” Kensinger said, knowing other patients might have been filling up the bigger regional centers, they had to be prepared to treat patients right in Elkader. (KCRG)

Mercy Iowa City will end affiliation with MercyOne

Mercy Iowa City officials said the hospital will leave its affiliation with the statewide MercyOne health network. Mercy Iowa City’s board of trustees instead has opted to align with a larger organization “that can fully integrate Mercy Iowa City” by offering broader access to infrastructure services, better purchasing power and greater clinical and operational support in the long term, according to a memo sent to hospital staff Wednesday. MercyOne, a Catholic health network headquartered in West Des Moines, has been the Iowa City hospital’s managing partner since June 1, 2017. (The Gazette)

National news

Moderna says studies show its vaccine is effective against the delta variant

Moderna studies show its vaccine is effective against the Delta variant, along with several other variants of concern. While still highly effective against the delta variant, the study showed the vaccine was less effective against it than against the original strain of the virus. The news echoes other findings that the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are highly effective against the emerging delta variant. (National Public Radio)

Common cold or COVID-19? Upper respiratory symptoms are growing more prevalent, docs say

Doctors are beginning to notice COVID-19 cases that look more like a very bad cold, especially in areas of the country where the highly contagious delta variant is quickly spreading. Although shortness of breath and other lung issues remain among the most worrisome COVID-19 symptoms, it appears upper-respiratory complaints — marked by congestion, a runny nose and headache — may be increasing. (NBC News)

The COVID-19 delta variant hints at a bigger problem for America

In May and June, as vaccine eligibility and access expanded in the US, the fever pitch of COVID-19 worry in the US started to ebb. As with motorcycle helmets or guns, it seemed like some people would take safety seriously, some wouldn’t care at all, and many others would fall somewhere in between. The country was reopening, and something akin to normalcy seemed to be in our grasp. Then the delta variant, and its close cousin, delta plus, were identified. As this variant has begun to dominate both the news and the genomic sequencing of new COVID-19 infections, Americans’ anxiety has proportionally increased. (NBC News)

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