Iowa COVID-19 deaths surpass 9,000 as hospitalizations drop

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The number of coronavirus-related deaths in Iowa climbed past 9,000, the state health department reported Wednesday, even as hospitalizations continue to decrease in the state.

The state reported a total of 9,085 people have died from the virus, including 137 since the latest report Feb. 16. Officials do not indicate when the deaths occurred.

Since Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds ordered the discontinuation of the state’s COVID-19 dashboard earlier in February, the health department has reported significantly less data on its website.

Iowa’s overall death rate, at 283 deaths per 100,000 people, ranks 30th in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Federal data shows 345 people are hospitalized in Iowa with COVID-19, the lowest level in about six months. The number of patients in intensive care has dropped to 38 patients as of Wednesday,

The CDC says all of Iowa’s 99 counties still have a high level of community transmission of the virus.

The vaccination rate in Iowa has changed little in recent months with 67.2% of the state’s population having received at least one dose.