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Iowa positive case rate continues climb, now fifth in US

DES MOINES — Iowa public health officials reported 356 new confirmed coronavirus cases on Monday, significantly lower than the daily average last week of more than 1,000 new cases and likely a reflection of lower testing over the weekend.

Testing during Monday through Friday last week averaged 12,000 tests a day, and positive tests averaged just over 1,000 a day.

State data shows just over 2,200 tests on Saturday and around 1,200 on Sunday.

In addition to the 356 new cases, the sate reported seven more deaths.

The state now has 92,901 confirmed positive cases since March and 1,388 deaths.

The seven-day rolling average of the positivity rate in Iowa has risen over the past two weeks from 14.9 percent on Sept. 20 to 17.64 percent on Sunday, according to an Associated Press analysis of data from Johns Hopkins University. That was the fifth-highest positivity rate in the nation on Sunday.

Many health experts recommend mask requirements and limits on gatherings in bars, restaurants and other public gathering places when positivity rates exceed 5 percent.

Gov. Kim Reynolds on Friday signed an order allowing bars to reopen Monday in Johnson and Story counties as long as they follow social-distancing rules. The two counties are home to the University of Iowa and Iowa State University. Breweries, wineries and distilleries in those counties were allowed to reopen on Friday.

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