Iowa Rolls Out Next Tier of COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution
All Iowans 65 and older are included in Iowa’s next wave of COVID-19 vaccinations, which begin Feb. 1. Governor Kim Reynolds said at her news conference today that this second tier will eventually immunize more than 530,000 Iowans. Initially, state health officials limited vaccinations to people to 75 and older.
The second phase rollout will offer vaccines to high priority groups like frontline essential workers, first responders and teachers. But Reynolds said the state could not open up vaccines to all Iowans yet.
“Or even that the vaccine will be immediately available to all of the groups that have been prioritized in phase 1b.”
Iowa is currently receiving 19,500 doses per week. Former President Donald Trump's administration said weekly allocation would increase to 39,000 by Feb. 8 and could continue to increase by 10,000 doses each week through March 1.
The Governor also announced a new CARES Act program, which would offer some relief to struggling Iowa bars and restaurants. The 40 million dollar program award grants of up to 25,000 dollars.
Reynolds also announced the reallocation of $17 million in relief money made available to local governments for direct expenses incurred in response to the COVID-19 emergency.
There were 24 new cases of COVID-19 in Woodbury County reported Tuesday and two new deaths according to Siouxland District Health. There are currently 30 people hospitalized in Siouxland with COVID-related illness.