Today’s NewsStand

Today’s NewsStand

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|August 9, 2021

Iowa News

UnityPoint hospitals, clinics will require workers to get COVID-19 vaccinations

UnityPoint Health — one of Iowa’s largest hospital and clinic systems — will require employees to be vaccinated against the coronavirus, the company announced Thursday. The West Des Moines-based has 33,000 employees in Iowa, Wisconsin and Illinois. Its flagship hospital is Iowa Methodist Medical Center in Des Moines. UnityPoint joins a growing list of hospital companies nationwide that have decided to require COVID-19 vaccinations as a way to safeguard patients. (Des Moines Register)

State board set to vote at end of August on North Liberty hospital proposal

After waiting for the governor’s office, the State Health Facilities Council will decide if the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics can build a new hospital in North Liberty Aug. 31. In February, the council denied the proposal in a close 2-3 vote. After the vote, Carol Earnhardt, who voted against the project, resigned. The council delayed the vote until Gov. Kim Reynolds named a replacement. (KCRG)

Opinion: It’s time for the Legislature and the governor to reconsider COVID-19 laws that were based on old data

In the waning hours of their regular 2021 session, Iowa lawmakers passed a bill banning public schools from mandating masks. In a perhaps-unprecedented midnight ceremony, Reynolds rushed to sign the law. The Legislature and governor also agreed to a new law forbidding business and government from requiring people to show vaccination proof. As a result, schools are left without two powerful weapons against the new variant. (Des Moines Register)

National News

Kids struggle with long COVID-19

As young people across the country prepare to return to school, many are struggling to recover from lingering post-COVID-19 neurological, physical or psychiatric symptoms. Often called “long COVID-19,” the symptoms and their duration vary, as does the severity. (The New York Times)

Hospitals in the south are running out of space or staff

Covid-19 hospitalizations are reaching all-time highs in parts of the south, with some patients unable to get the care they would normally receive. Across the country, states are struggling to fend off the delta variant — the most contagious strain of coronavirus yet. But the situation in particularly worrisome in several southern states. (CNN)

Zoom launches new telehealth feature for greater accessibility

Patients with Apple devices can now join telehealth appointments in a HIPAA-compliant setting without downloading Zoom’s app, the company said Aug. 9. The company has added an iOS mobile browser feature to its Zoom for Healthcare platform that allows Apple device users to securely join telehealth appointments directly from their mobile browser. Providers can send patients a Zoom meeting link that launches the meeting in a mobile browser once clicked. Zoom said the new feature is intended to decrease the amount of time providers and IT professionals spend coaching patients through tech support, allow patients and providers more flexibility in choosing where they conduct telehealth appointments from, and give patients the option of not having to download any software. (Becker’s Hospital Review)

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