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Local 5 - weareiowa.com | Des Moines Local News & Weather | Des Moines, Iowa

Polk County health officials call 20% increase in COVID-19 cases a 'disturbing trend'

The Polk County Health Department said Monday recent cases are "especially alarming" since many plan to visit family and friends over the 4th of July weekend.

Confirmed coronavirus cases in Polk and Dallas counties increased by 20% over the last week, according to the Polk County Health Department.

"We have seen a new disturbing trend over the past week of COVID-19 cases increasing in Polk County,” Polk County Health Department Director Helen Eddy said in a release.

Eddy said it's "especially alarming" since many plan to visit family and friends over the 4th of July holiday weekend.

Since the beginning of June, Polk County has ahveraged about 50-55 new cases a day, according to PCHD. Cases last week increased by 20% in both Polk and Dallas counties. 

Credit: WOI
Data from the Iowa Dept. of Public Health shows the number of COVID-19 cases confirmed in Polk County. June 29, 2020.
Credit: WOI
Confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose by 20% since June 22. That's according to the Polk County Health Department. Data from the Iowa Dept. of Public Health. June 29, 2020.

The United States as a whole marked over 40,000 new cases in the last two days. 

Eddy said the best way to prevent further spread of the virus is to wear a mask. 

The health department also outlined the following tips for keeping yourself and others healthy for this Independence Day:

  • Keep your guests to 10 people or less. 
  • Hold your gathering outside, if possible. If inside, ensure social distancing and open doors and windows for proper ventilation.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often. If soap and water is not available, use an alcohol hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. 
  • Practice social distancing by staying at least six feet apart.
  • Avoid buffet-style or self-serving food stations. Wear gloves to serve food.
  • Clean and disinfect high-touch areas frequently

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