COVID Cases Spike in Iowa Raises Concerns with Hospitals, Colleges and Arts Organizations

Sep 3, 2021

Courtesy of coronavirus.iowa.gov

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The surge in coronavirus cases in Iowa and an increasing number of critically ill patients  has raised concerns about having enough beds, and health care providers. While Iowa’s hospitals are not as full as they were this past fall, the latest spike has officials worried. On Wednesday, UIHC reported 41 COVID-19 admissions, including 36 adult patients and five pediatric patients.

The need for intensive-care beds across the state will continue to grow, peaking at nearly 400 beds in October, according to projections from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, based at the University of Washington.

The University of Iowa's graduate student workers union is calling for stronger on-campus mitigation protocols, according to the Cedar Rapids Gazette.

The union members sent a list of demands to the UIowa administration and state's Board of Regents in a letter dated Sept. 1, and followed that up Thursday morning with a "die-in" protest on the Pentacrest designed to draw attention to their plea.

Demands include more remote work options, a mask mandate inside campus buildings and required vaccinations or mandatory weekly testing of unvaccinated people, none of which are currently in place.

Des Moines Performing Arts is requiring all of its staff and volunteers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 for the upcoming performance season, according to an email obtained by the Des Moines Register. 

Meanwhile, the nonprofit organization is considering safety protocols for attendees of its shows, which may include requiring masks, according to the email and its website. Details for attendees are expected to be released next week,.