Featuring hospital and health care headlines from the media and the web.
MercyOne Elkader Medical Center and Guttenberg Municipal Hospital & Clinics released the following joint statement today as COVID-19 cases continue to rise in Clayton County. “In the past seven days, Clayton County has had its largest increase in COVID-19 positive cases as well as hospitalizations. From the start of the pandemic, MercyOne Elkader Medical Center and Guttenberg Municipal Hospital & Clinics have been prepared for higher volumes, but have remained relatively stable. That environment changed this week. Now, our hospitals are experiencing the highest level of COVID-19 related hospitalizations since the start of the pandemic. Our hospitals are not yet at capacity and remain prepared to care for those in need.” (KCRG)
The coronavirus infected another Iowan every 80 seconds in October, on average. Nearly every 20 minutes, one more Iowan was admitted to a hospital with symptoms of COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. And every two-and-a-half hours, another Iowan died from it. By several metrics, October was Iowa’s worst month yet for the pandemic, which began its spread here in March. The situation could deteriorate further in the winter months as people spend more time indoors — where it’s easier for the virus to spread, experts said. (Des Moines Register)
As hospitals across Iowa become stressed from an increase in COVID cases and record-setting hospitalizations, University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics is making operational changes in anticipation of an influx in patients – with or without COVID – who need complex care. (KCRG)
The Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Labor, and the Department of the Treasury have issued a final rule on price transparency, helping to ensure Americans know how much care will cost in advance and allowing them to make fully informed and value-conscious decisions. The rule requires that almost all health insurance companies and self-insured plans disclose pricing and cost-sharing information. (HHS.gov)
On Wednesday, CMS said in a news release that Americans won’t have to pay out of pocket for a coronavirus vaccine that gains full FDA approval or Emergency Use Authorization. That includes Medicare and Medicaid recipients, people with private insurance — even those who haven’t met their deductibles for the year — and those with no insurance at all. In a document released Thursday, the World Health Organization showed several vaccines are in Phase 3 development, being given to thousands of people to test their effectiveness and safety. (WeAreIowa.com)
It was either put food on the table or drop their health insurance, says Oscar Anchia of Miami. His wife’s coverage was costing $700 a month, and his hours had been cut back because of the coronavirus pandemic. So Anchia made the difficult decision to drop his spouse from his policy, because they needed the money. Then in October, his love for 40 years fell ill with COVID-19. (Iowa Public Radio)