Webster County COVID-19 deaths up 380% in two months

Deaths climb quickly as positivity rate recedes

As the positivity rate continues to slowly drop in December, the death toll for victims of COVID-19 continues to hit new heights in Webster County.

In less than two months, the number of people who were killed by the coronavirus nearly quadrupled, from 15 deaths on Oct. 27 to 57 deaths by Tuesday. Since Dec. 5 alone, the count has grown from 39 to 57.

Death tolls for Webster County were reflected on the following dates in The Messenger:

• Oct. 27: 15 deaths

• Nov. 6: 17 deaths

• Nov. 12: 20 deaths

• Dec. 5: 39 deaths

• Dec. 11: 47 deaths

• Dec. 22: 57 deaths

Webster County Public Health has reported 114 new COVID-19 cases since Friday, bringing the county’s cumulative case load to 4,498 as of Tuesday. A total of 185 residents’ cases remain open under public health monitoring.

The county’s rolling positivity rate, the proportion of those tested who received positive results over the last two weeks, dropped again slightly from 16.1% on Friday to 15.8% Tuesday.

COVID-19 testing remains available at multiple sites in Webster County, including the following:

• UnityPoint Health: Call your primary care provider.

• Community Health Center of Fort Dodge: Call ahead to 515-576-6500 for urgent, routine or COVID-19 rapid testing to make an appointment.

• Iowa Specialty Clinic: Call ahead to 515-955-6767 for COVID-19 rapid testing. Patients at the Iowa Specialty Clinic must be symptomatic to receive testing.

Webster County Public Health does not conduct testing, but analyzes and acts on the testing information provided by medical providers before implementing U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance and contact tracing as necessary.

The agency asks those without health insurance in need of testing to advise their scheduler when making an appointment. If you are awaiting test results, the public health department said it is imperative to self-quarantine until receipt of the test results.

Webster County Public Health’s COVID Hotline remains available to residents with questions regarding COVID-19 including quarantine, isolation guidance and exposures. The hotline is available by phone at 515-227-7153 or via email at WebCoCOVID@WebsterCountyIA.org.

CHC COVID testing holiday hours

The Community Health Center of Fort Dodge COVID testing site will be closed on Thursday and Friday for the Christmas holiday. The testing site will be open again on Saturday. The site will also be closed on Jan. 1 for the New Year’s Day holiday and open on Jan. 2.

The Fort Dodge site offers dual testing for both COVID-19 and influenza. The drive-thru testing is by appointment only and takes place at 2031 Quail Avenue (ICCC East Campus). To schedule an appointment, go online to chcfd.com.


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