Kim Reynolds

Coronavirus Update - April 7, 2020

Kim Reynolds
April 07, 2020
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Good morning. We'll go ahead and start this morning's update with the numbers from yesterday. Today we have 102 new positive cases for a total of 1,048 positive cases. We have three new counties, Buena Vista, Delaware and Greene for a total of 78 counties. We have 1,017 negative cases today for a total of 11, 670 negative cases. We have 1,690 available tests at the State Hygienic Lab. As of last evening, we have a 104 hospitalized and we have 341 recovered. I am sorry to report again today that we have had one additional death, an elderly adult from Benton County, for a total of 26 deaths in Iowa. 11% of the positive cases are long-term care staff and residents and 46% of the deaths have been long-term care residents. So many Iowans have expressed interest in the Iowa National Guard’s role in our COVID-19 response and how they are being engaged to help mitigate the spread of the virus. The Iowa National Guard plays a critical role in any disaster situation and is a vital part of my COVID-19 response team. In previous press conferences, you've heard about the missions they're conducting across the state to ensure that PPE is available for health care workers. But their responsibilities extend much further and are integral to our entire response operations, especially in the coordination of health care resources across Iowa. Today I've asked adjutant general Ben Corell to join me and provide an overview of how the Iowa National Guard is supporting our state during this unprecedented time. General?

[Ben Corell speaks]

Thank You, General. I also want to thank all the soldiers and airmen of the Iowa National Guard for their services to our state, we deeply appreciate the sacrifices you and your families make whenever duty calls. Please be safe and stay well as you serve on the front line of this crisis. As General Corell stated, the RMCCs are a critical resource to support health care providers at this time. Under normal circumstances, Iowa's health care coalition regions are served by separate health care systems, community hospitals and independent providers, but during an emergency especially one the size and scope of a worldwide pandemic, it may become necessary to pool resources and work together as one health system serving the needs of a region or the entire state. And this is what the RMCCs are proactively planning for. Last week we shared a map representing Iowa's six health care coalition regions and today I want to take a closer look at two of those regions and explain how the RMCCs can enable care coordination between providers to ensure the right care at the right time and in the right place for Iowans in need. So, for instance, RMCC region five and includes the southeast corner of the state and includes Johnson County — one of the state's hot spots and a county where our first positive COVID-19 cases were identified. As of yesterday, 20 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized in region five. Three had been admitted in the last 24 hours, seven were in ICU and three were on ventilators. At this time there remain 713 inpatient beds available in the region, 94 ICU beds and 181 ventilators available and ready for patient care. RMCC region six covers the northeast corner of the state and it includes Linn County — another of the current hotspots in the state. As of today, 77 of Linn County’s 184 total positive COVID cases are related to an outbreak in a single long-term care facility. We know older adults over the age of 60 and those with underlying health conditions are at the highest risk for serious illness from the virus and may require intensive care. We have 50 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in region five as of yesterday. Six had been admitted in the last 24 hours, 27 were in an ICU and 17 were on ventilators. During this same time frame, there were 1,004 inpatient beds available, 57 ICU beds and 110 ventilators available in region six hospitals. Despite our increasing cases, our patient volume in these rich regions is manageable. Hospital capacity is strong and ventilators are in good supply. This is encouraging but we are in a very fluid situation which is why we continue to monitor everything very closely on a daily basis. Understanding our bed and vent capacity and intensive care capabilities within a region enables us to effectively coordinate care if patient volume dramatically increases. If critical equipment like vents are in short supply to facility the RMCC will coordinate moving them from one location to another to accommodate the need. Even patients can be transferred to a different facility if their condition demands a higher level of care.

As we progress toward an anticipated peak of positive cases later this month, the RMCCs’ ability to monitor patient volume, acuity and availability of resources will better enable our health systems to surge and flex to accommodate increased demand across the region. I want to extend my gratitude to Iowa's primary health systems including UIHC, Unity Point Health, Mercy One, and Genesis as well as all of the community hospitals across the state. Your commitment to coming together as one system to serve Iowans during this unprecedented time is admirable. So, thank you for everything that you're doing and for what you and your teams will do in the days and weeks to come. Thank you. And with that we will open it up for questions.

Reynolds, K.K. [Iowa PBS]. (2020, April 7). Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds Press Conference | April 7, 2020, 11 a.m. []. Retrieved on June 6, 2020 from