Good afternoon. We’ll go ahead and get started and we’ll start with an update from the number of cases of COVID-19 in Iowa that was released earlier this morning, Today, we have 19 new positive cases for a total of 124 positive cases in Iowa. 272 total negative tests were negative today for a total of 2,315 negative tests and a total of 2,439 total tests. That includes four new counties: Buchannan, Cedar, Jasper, and Warren, for a total of 30 counties. We have 18 hospitalized as of last evening, 17 as of right now — we had one discharged from the seven last night. We had two of the new were recovering at home and nine of those hospitalized were already in the hospital and tested positive based on the criteria that we’re using for testing.
You know, since the day that we first learned of COVID-19 was here in Iowa, I’ve asked Iowans remain calm and to stay informed — having the most up-to-date information from credible, reliable sources is so important during these times. I made a commitment to do my part to keep Iowans informed and today I want to take the time to thank some of the people who have really made that possible. To the Homeland Security and Emergency Management and the Iowa National Guard, thank you for standing up the State Emergency Operations Center, and for making sure those of us who are leading the response effort are informed and prepared to deploy the necessary strategies and polices. To the incredible team at the Iowa Department of Public Health — that is truly on the front line protecting the health of our people — thank you for making sure that Iowans have the information and the know-how that they need to make a difference. To Director Clabaugh, Dr. Pedati, and Sarah Reister, and to the staff manning the 211-call center, your expertise is reassuring to Iowans during these challenging times. Finally, to my team here at the SEOC, I want to thank you for supporting me and the Lieutenant Governor each and every day. And to the rest of the team back at the capital — team capital — thank you for taking every call and answering every email and letter from Iowans looking for answers. I want you to know that you’re making a difference.
Each day my office issues a press release with the daily update of the number of positive COVID-19 cases in Iowa with the age range and the counties of residence for each of the affected individuals. This information is also posted on the Department of Public Health website and on a new website launched earlier this week which is coronavirus.iowa.gov. The new website is intended to be a one-stop shop for Iowans looking for any type of information related to COVID-19 mitigation and response efforts in our state. The website will guide you to a variety of useful information from state agencies on topics such as Health and Human Resources, employment and unemployment, business, education, travel and transportation, as well as Public Safety. I will also continue to hold press conferences on a near-daily basis to update you on timely information and you can of course tune in live on my Facebook page or and on iowapbs.org. I also want to extend my gratitude to Iowa PBS for their public service during this time. They’ve made it possible for us to implement social distancing measures here at the SEOC that protect our team as well as the media and we greatly appreciate that partnership.
Finally, for the latest information about COVID-19, how to prevent it and what to do if you’re exposed or become sick go to the CDC gov for the most up-to-date accurate information. You can also tap into your favorite media outlets for information and stories about COVID-19 and how it’s affecting our state, nation, and countries around the world. And then there’s social media, which can be both a blessing and a curse during these challenging times. Be intentional about how you are using social media. If you’re looking for news and information, follow credible sources don’t just rely on what pops up in your newsfeed. Social media is a great way is great way to stay connected with friends and family, especially while we’re social distancing and spending more time at home. But it’s also ripe for misinformation, false narratives, and harmful rumors. Rumors and speculation are not helpful at a time like this and don’t be a part of it, it only adds to the anxiety that so many people are already experiencing. So, know the facts. We are reporting positive cases daily and the Department of Public Health and local public health officials are working with those individuals and those communities. And if you have questions about how to treat the virus, check the CDC website or talk to your doctor. It’s so important that we don’t get distracted by the noise and that you get the information from credible, reliable sources. So, please stay informed, again remain calm and take all preventative measures to protect your health and the health of your fellow Iowans. Wash your hands, cover your cough, work from home if you have the option, stay at home as much as possible, practice social distancing, and don’t put yourself or others at risk of exposure. We can do this and I’m counting on all Iowans to help us as we work through these unprecedented times.
So, with that I’d like to ask Sarah Reister from the Department of Public Health to say a few words. Sarah?
[Sarah Reister speaks]
And with that we’ll open it up for questions.
Reynolds, K.K. [Discover Muscatine]. (2020, March 24). Governor Kim Reynolds COVID-19 Press Conference | 3/24/2020 [https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B8Wxgarmbp0]. Retrieved on April 30, 2020 from https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCj66JjBX9jsGaklX3IgJZfg.