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Weather delays vaccine shipment

The winter weather pummeling the country has caused a delay in the arrival of the latest shipment of COVID-19 vaccines for Marshall County.

Marshall County Public Health Nurse Pat Thompson said normally the vaccine shipment arrives on Tuesday. She is not sure when this week’s shipment will show up, but is confident it will arrive eventually.

“Who knew the electricity would go out,” Thompson asked. “When it gets here, we will be consistent on going forward with our plans.”

When it does, Thompson assured the vaccines will be used . . . and used quickly. Marshall County was not one of the five Iowa counties the state withheld vaccines from for failing to go through 80 percent of the doses. Thompson said Marshall County has no problem going through the vaccines in a timely manner.

Out of the 529,445 vaccinations given in Iowa, 1,713 have been in Marshall County.

Vaccinations are being provided to schools and Thompson said that phase of the vaccine effort should be completed this week.

“Next comes child care workers,” she said. “Some clinics are planning for child care workers next week. We have a plan for every dose at this point.”

One educational facility not included is the Marshalltown Community College. Chancellor Kristie Fisher said community colleges were removed from the tiers and phases of the state COVID-19 vaccine schedule.

“We did request for community colleges to be put back in, but the state is unable to accommodate that,” Fisher said. “However, our health care occupation staff and students have been vaccinated.”

Thompson is not sure when vaccines will be provided to manufacturing facilities, such as JBS. The county cannot advance to other tiers in the schedule until the state gives the OK to do so. Manufacturing is in Tier 2 of the inoculation plan.

“No one knows when Tier 2 will begin,” she said. “We are already looking at that, but we have to wait until it opens up. We want to get them the vaccine because those employees work shoulder-to-shoulder.”

Throughout the state, 5,321 people have died from the virus. Marshall County has reported 70 deaths, up one in the last week, and 4,561 of Iowa’s 357,923 cases.

Long-term care facilities have 27 active outbreaks. In Marshall County, two facilities are still in outbreak status — Accura Healthcare of Marshalltown and Iowa Veterans Home. IDPH shows Accura with 12 active cases and IVH with 18. However, Commandant Timon Oujiri said the COVID unit on the campus is empty, so no residents have the virus.

ACCORDING TO IDPH DATA:

Race:

• Caucasian: 59 percent

• Hispanic or Latino: 6 percent

• African American: 1 percent

• Asian: 2 percent

Sex:

• Female: 52 percent

• Male: 46 percent

Age:

• 0-17: 14 percent

• 18-29: 23 percent

• 30-39: 16 percent

• 40-49: 10 percent

• 50-59: 14 percent

• 60-69: 8 percent

• 70-79: 8 percent

• 80 or older: 7 percent

Marshall County has the 16th highest number of total COVID-19 cases in Iowa

The counties with highest numbers include

Polk – 50,450

Linn – 19,183

Scott – 16,835

Black Hawk – 14,735

Woodbury – 13,533

Johnson – 12,886

Dubuque – 12,183

Dallas – 9,892

Pottawattamie – 9,651

Story – 9,343

Cerro Gordo – 4,934

Warren – 4,992

Webster – 4,868

Clinton – 4,899

Sioux – 4,712

Marshall – 4,561

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