News Flash

COVID-19 Status Update

Posted on: January 29, 2021

Linn County COVID-19 Status Update

LINN COUNTY COVID-19 STATUS UPDATE

January 29, 2021


COVID-19 Vaccine Information 

Phase 1B of COVID-19 vaccination will begin Monday, February 1. This phase includes persons 65 and older and specific populations vulnerable to high risk of exposure or severity of illness. 

Currently, populations included in Phase 1A and persons 65 and older and may receive vaccine at any time. 

Vaccine supply is extremely limited. We ask our community to be patient as we all work to vaccinate as many individuals as possible given the vaccine availability. Currently, demand for vaccine far exceeds the supply. 

Please sign up to receive email notifications for COVID-19 Status Updates to keep up-to-date on vaccine rollout updates and other important information regarding COVID-19 response. For assistance with signing up for updates, view this video. In addition to the Linn County COVID-19 vaccine website LinnCounty.org/Vaccine, updates will also be shared on Facebook and Twitter. For questions on COVID-19 vaccine in Linn County, call 319-892-6097. Stay tuned to local news outlets for updated information. 

Phase 1B  

Vaccine remains in short supply, and not everyone in Phase 1B will be able to get vaccine right away. It may take weeks to months for the Phase 1B populations to receive vaccine. Linn County Public Health will designate 50% of the county vaccine allotment to persons 65 and older and the remaining 50% to populations vulnerable to high risk of exposure or severity of illness, beginning with identified Tier 1 populations.

Persons 65 years and older

As vaccine becomes available, health care providers will be contacting their patients by phone, email, or text to set up appointments for vaccine. These organizations ask that patients do not call their clinics requesting the vaccine at this time, as a high volume of calls makes it more difficult to address those patients with immediate needs. Additionally, patients should not walk-in to clinics at this time to request vaccine. You may also check your healthcare provider’s website for additional information and instructions for making an appointment. If you do not have a primary health care provider, please contact Linn County Public Health at 319-892-6097 for assistance in making a vaccine appointment. Appointments will continue to fill quickly. Additional appointments will be opened as supply increases. 

DO NOT CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER FOR A VACCINE APPOINTMENT

Tier 1

Due to the limited supply of vaccine, vaccine will be prioritized to identified groups within Tier 1.  Considerations for prioritization within Tier 1 include high risk of exposure, severity of illness, and ensuring sustainability of frontline workers. Additionally, Tier 1 agencies and organizations will be asked to prioritize vaccine within their organization. Vaccine will be offered to the following populations in Tier 1, in order of priority:  

Phase 1B – Tier 1 Prioritization
GroupPriority Population Description
1Law enforcement
Fire department personnel
Emergency response personnel
2Early Childhood Education staff
School transportation staff
Childcare Centers with 10 or more staff
PreK-5th Grade building teachers and staff
Grant Wood Area Education Agency staff working with PreK- 5th grade students
3Childcare Centers with 4-9 staff
6th-8th Grade building teachers and staff
Grant Wood Area Education Agency staff working with 6th-8th grade students
4Childcare Centers with 1-3 staff
9th-12th Grade building teachers and staff
Grant Wood Area Education Agency staff working with 9th-12th grade students
5Child Welfare Social Workers
Extracurricular teachers
Tutors and staff of tutoring centers
Administration staff not associated with a specific building
Persons 65 years and older who are providing childcare for family members, if not previously vaccinated


Tiers 2-5

Linn County Public Health will prioritize within Tiers 2-5 in Phase 1B, and will share final prioritizations once available. Phase 1B Tier 2-5 populations include: 

  • Tier 2
    • Frontline essential workers in food, agriculture, and manufacturing sectors who live or work in non-social distanced settings 
    • Individuals with disabilities living in home settings and their direct care staff 
  • Tier 3
    • Staff and individuals living in congregate settings not covered by previous Phase or Tier
    • Government officials, including staff, engaged in business at the State Capitol 
  • Tier 4
    • Inspectors responsible for health, life and safety 
  • Tier 5
    • Correctional facility staff and individuals incarcerated

 Vaccine Distribution Highlights

  • Current Phase: 1A 
  • Projected time to next phase: Phase 1B will begin February 1
  • Populations included within Phase 1a
    1. Residents and staff of long-term care facilities*
      * Nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities
    2. Healthcare personnel 
  • Progress within Phase 1A: 
    • Vaccine will continue to be offered to this group as they are identified and request vaccine. Phase 1A populations request to be vaccinated should complete the employer vaccine form to request vaccination. 
    • Most Linn County long-term care facilities are participating in the national Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program (PPLTCP). Vaccination of participating facilities began December 28, 2020 and is ongoing. 
    • A report of COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Administered in Iowa by county is posted at https://coronavirus.iowa.gov/:
      • 18,520 doses have been administered by Linn County providers, with 4,197 vaccine series complete by Linn County providers
  • Groups to be offered vaccine next: 
    • Phase 1B
      1. Persons aged 65 years and older
      2. Populations vulnerable to high risk of exposure or severity of illness
    • The CDC has recommended priority populations for Phase 1C, however, a recommendation for  Iowa has not been made. 
    • Projected time to next phase: Phase 1B will begin February 1

Businesses

Linn County Public Health (LCPH) is compiling information from employers to help link you and your staff to agencies administering the COVID-19 vaccine as it becomes available. LCPH has recently developed an employer vaccine form for employers interested in offering COVID-19 vaccine to their employees. 

  • Employers who have employees in Phase 1B should complete the form now, if they have not done so already. Phase 1A populations that have not yet received vaccine can still complete the form. 
  • Those that have already completed the form do not need to do so again.
  • It is best to access the form in Chrome. 
  • We recommend filling out the comments section with exactly what you do, where you go, and what patient contact you have (if any). This helps LCPH place you accordingly for vaccine.

Complete the form here, or direct link is: https://survey123.arcgis.com/share/891d3217630c46cebd1b5db8bba47b8a?portalUrl=https://lcgis.linncounty.org/portal

Vaccine FAQs

For questions about COVID-19 vaccine in Linn County:

 Linn County Case Count Data 

  • Active cases: 2,148
  • Total cases to date: 18,334
  • Currently hospitalized: 24
  • Total deaths: 251
  • Total recovered: 15,935

Additional data on COVID-19 cases is available on Linn County’s case count dashboard.  

Linn County Metrics 

  • Test Positivity Rate*: 17.8% 
    • *Percent of positive tests to date since beginning of pandemic
  • 7-Day Test Positivity Rate: 11.5%
  • 14-Day Test Positivity Rate: 8.1%
  • Current Recommendation for Actions to Combat Increase in COVID-19: Tier 2, effective January 25, 2021

Additional Linn County metrics are available on Linn County’s metrics dashboard.

For more COVID-19 information specific to Linn County, visit LinnCounty.org/COVID19.


Know Your Ws wash your hands, wear a face mask, wait six feet apart


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