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Iowa virus hospitalizations continue to decline

DES MOINES (AP) — The number of people hospitalized with the coronavirus in Iowa has dipped below 500 for the first time since October.

The Iowa Department of Public Health said 474 people were being treated for COVID-19 in hospitals Saturday, down from 505 on Friday. The last time the number of people hospitalized was below 500 was on Oct. 18.

The state reported 730 new cases and two deaths Sunday to give Iowa a total of 304,852 cases and 4,323 deaths since the pandemic began.

Over the past week, Iowa has been reporting an average of 941.43 new cases per day. That is up from two weeks ago when the state was reporting a seven-day rolling average of 883 new cases per day on Jan. 2.

Iowa reported a 14-day positivity rate of 13% on Sunday. The state said 36 of Iowa’s 99 counties had a positivity rate above 15%, and another 46 counties reported positivity rates between 10% and 15%.

In Webster County, the 14-day positivity rate is 10%. The county’s seven-day positivity rate is 6%, with 59 total positive cases repoorted during those seven days.

Seventy-one COVID-related deaths have been reported in the county.

More than 19,000 people have been tested for the virus in the county. There have been 4,673 positive individuals. According to the state’s coronavirus website, 3,913 of those individuals have recovered.

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