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Iowa COVID surge sends hospitalizations to highest in a year

December 8, 2021 GMT

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Hospitalizations reported by the Iowa Department of Public Health increased Wednesday as the state continues to experience a surge in coronavirus cases leading to more people being treated in hospitals, higher numbers in intensive care and more deaths.

Hospitalizations increased 7.5% from the Monday update to 777 patients with 185 people requiring ICU care, up 14% from two days ago.

The number of hospitalized patients is the highest since Dec. 14, 2020, and the ICU census is the highest in a year.

Seven unvaccinated children age 11 or younger are hospitalized. Three children between age 12 and 17 are hospitalized. Two are unvaccinated and one is fully vaccinated.

The state report shows 6% of children age 5 to 11 in Iowa are fully vaccinated.

Overall in Iowa, 57.5% of the population is fully vaccinated, placing the state 24th in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC also reports that nearly 37% of the state population has received no vaccine.

Iowa has experienced 1,897 confirmed cases per day over the past week, the highest daily rate since Dec. 11, 2020, according to CDC data.

The state reported an additional 105 COVID-19 deaths, saying they occurred between Oct. 12 and Dec. 1. That raises the state total to 7,550 deaths.