COVID-19 pandemic back on the upswing in Iowa in last data update before Thanksgiving – Des Moines Register

One week after the state reported its fewest COVID-19 hospitalizations in six months, the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Iowa was back on the rise, and new reported cases also increased, according to data released Wednesday by the Iowa Department of Public Health and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

There were 172 people hospitalized in Iowa with COVID-19 as of Wednesday’s update, the federal health department said, including 19 who required intensive care. That’s 35 more COVID-19 hospitalizations than last week, although still slightly fewer than the week prior.

The number of new COVID-19 cases reported this week was also higher, as many Iowans begin gathering for the Thanksgiving holiday. The state health department reported 2,302 new cases this week, the first time it has reported more than 2,000 new cases in one week since late September. That averages to about 329 new cases per day, up from 283 last week.

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As of the most recent update last week, analysis of Des Moines’ wastewater showed an increasing concentration of the coronavirus, which has historically been a signal of rising case counts. That data, from the Des Moines Metropolitan Wastewater Reclamation Authority, still isn’t particularly close to the higher levels seen in the area in the summer and early fall.

The state health department reported an additional 23 COVID-19 deaths this week, raising Iowa’s pandemic death toll to 10,276. Many of the deaths reported this week, however, likely occurred earlier, as the state health department takes time to verify and publicly report new COVID-19 deaths.

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The latest COVID-19 numbers in Iowa

The latest data in Iowa since March 2020 for the pandemic, as of midnight Nov. 23, compared with one week earlier:

  • Confirmed cases: 870,897, an increase of 2,302.
  • Deaths: 10,276, an increase of 23.

The Iowa Department of Public Health reports vaccination data once per month. As of Nov. 9, 59.7% of Iowa’s population were considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19, having received their initial one- or two-dose vaccine sequence.

How many people are hospitalized with COVID-19 in Iowa?

Note: Hospitalization data for COVID-19 is no longer available through the Iowa Department of Public Health. The data below is from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

  • Hospitalizations: 172, up from 137 one week ago.
  • Patients in intensive care: 19, up from 16.

Tim Webber is a data visualization specialist for the Register. Reach him at, 515-284-8532, and on Twitter at @HelloTimWebber.