August 16, 2022

COVID still seen in Union County

Union County Public Health Director Zach Woods told Union County Board of Supervisors Monday there has been an increase in people asking about COVID.

“In the last couple of weeks getting a lot of more calls about exposure and positive tests,” he said. “COVID was still present, we started to see an increase in calls.”

As of Friday, he said the case count the previous seven days was 20.

Woods said vaccines still available at Union County Public Health and clinics.

“We have plenty of stock,” he said.

A COVID booster is available too.

“There is more interest in the second booster for those that are over 50,” he said.

Supervisor Ron Riley, who was in attendance with a mask, said he had COVID last week. He explained how he quarantined for five days and then began wearing a mask for five days.

“I’ve been symptom free for at least three days. I figure I’m OK but I will wear the mask,” Riley said. Woods said suggestions are to wear a mask for the sixth through 10th day after a positive test. After the 10th day, the mask is not needed.

Woods said a fever above 100.3 is a basis for COVID.

Woods said he still sees the omicron variant in county cases.

For more information about COVID and vaccines, contact Union County Public Health at their office at 803 Wyoming in Creston or call 641-782-3545.

The information was explained the same day the City of Cedar Rapids requires the public to wear masks in city buildings. Masks will be recommended on Cedar Rapids Transit. All city buildings remain open to the public with the mask requirement in effect, according to Cedar Rapids information.

According to the Iowa Department of Public Health on Monday, Linn County, where Cedar Rapids is located, had 615 positive tests in the previous seven days. Clarke County was considered high by the department having 319 cases per 100,000 people.

Cedar Rapids city employees will be required to wear masks in city buildings, vehicles and any other indoor locations while on-duty and in the presence of others. In-person, indoor meetings will require all attendees to wear a mask. Employees will not be required to wear a mask while in their office space and not within 6 feet of other individuals.

In other public health news:

Woods also explained a community health needs assessment is available. There are 17 questions which can take up to 5 minutes to complete.

Questions range from health and health needs.

“We hope to get some good feedback and address those needs,” he said.

The last survey assessment had 150 responses in 2016.

“I hope we at least triple that,” Woods said

Online versions can be seen at greaterregional.org. Hard copy versions are expected at courthouse.

John Van Nostrand

JOHN VAN NOSTRAND

An Iowa native, John's newspaper career has mostly been in small-town weeklies from the Rocky Mountains to the Mississippi River. He first stint in Creston was from 2002 to 2005.