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Iowa virus hospitalizations up 16% with 923 being treated

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The number of people being treated for the coronavirus in Iowa hospitals surged by 16% in the past week, according to data released Wednesday by the state Department of Public Health.

The department reported 923 people in hospitals with COVID-19 infections, the highest number in Iowa since Dec. 4, 2020, and up from the 792 people reported last Wednesday. The state data shows 178 people were in intensive care units, compared to 161 a week ago.

Thirteen children age 11 or younger are hospitalized with COVID-19, and all are unvaccinated. Nine children age 12-17 are in hospitals, including seven who are unvaccinated. An additional five unvaccinated people aged 18 or 19 are also hospitalized with the coronavirus.

State officials reported an additional 181 deaths, noting they date back as far as early October, raising the state death total to 8,201. Iowa’s seven-day death rate is 11th in the nation at 5.1 per 100,000, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Outbreaks in long-term care facilities climbed to 41 facilities. A week ago it was 25 facilities.

Iowa’s seven-day moving average of 4,525 confirmed cases per day as of Tuesday neared the all-time high of 4,622 cases on Nov. 15, 2022.

Nearly 60% of the state’s population is fully vaccinated, and 34.5% of Iowans remain completely unvaccinated, according to the CDC