DES MOINES, Iowa- Polk County health officials are reporting a 20-percent increase in COVID-19 cases. Officials say since the start of June, the county has averaged around 50 cases per day, but in the past week, that number has been 20-percent higher, both in Polk and Dallas Counties.
Helen Eddy, director of Polk County Health Department says the uptick is especially alarming since, going into a holiday weekend, when people tend to socialize more. Health officials say there could be several factors in the increase, including more testing, but there's also concern that residents are becoming complacent about the virus.
“We know wearing a mask works. It helps to reduce number of positive cases, hospitalizations and deaths,” said Eddy. “Wear your mask to keep yourself, those around you and the community healthy and safe.” The Polk County Health Department is reminding people to take the following precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- Keep your guests to 10 people or less.
- Hold your gathering outside, if possible. If inside, ensure social distancing and open doors and windows for proper ventilation.
- Wash your hands with soap and water often. If soap and water is not available, use an alcohol hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Practice social distancing by staying at least six feet apart.
- Avoid buffet-style or self-serving food stations. Wear gloves to serve food.
- Clean and disinfect high-touch areas frequently.
For more information about the COVID-19 in Polk County, please Polk County Health Department’s website at www.polkcountyiowa.gov/health.