Story County surpasses 600 COVID-19 cases
Story County now has over 600 cases of COVID-19, according to a report by state health officials on Friday.
On Friday, Story County saw an additional 37 cases, and of those cases, “at least half of the cases are in the (19 to 25-year-old) demographic,” according to Steve Sullivan, a spokesperson for Mary Greeley Medical Center and Story County Public Health.
As of Friday at 10 a.m., 609 individuals have tested positive for the virus, and of those cases, 162 have recovered, according to Iowa’s Coronavirus website. Three Story County residents have died.
Over the last week, a total of 233 cases have been reported in Story County.
Since the start of June, Story County encountered a spike resulting in 472 additional cases of COVID-19. The spike now accounts for 77% of the county’s total cases as a total of 127 cases were reported from March 20 to May 31.
In response to the recent surge throughout the county, Mary Greeley Medical Center announced on Friday plans to reinstate a no visitor policy which comes 10 days after easing restrictions. The facility first created a no visitor policy on April 6.
“Due to the rise in cases in Story County, [officials at Mary Greeley] have decided to reinforce the no visitor policy,” Sullivan said.
This week, local businesses throughout Ames made decisions to close doors again as a result of the uptick in cases.
In Ames on Monday, Macubana and Cafe Beaudelaire, which are co-owned by Herbert Dardano and Claudio Gianello, had signs on windows which announced closure “until further notice due to the increase of COVID-19 cases in Ames and Story County.”
On Sunday, West Towne Pub revealed the restaurant would close for 72 hours due to the rise in cases, and upon returning to work, all staff are asked to be tested.
“We have taken many precautions during this pandemic with hourly sanitation, having our employees wear masks, gloves, and taking employee temperatures from the start and will continue to do so to protect our patrons,” West Towne Pub wrote in a Facebook post.
Additional businesses including Welch Avenue Station and Bar La Tosca also took to social media to announce plans to close.
Nearly 500 cases reported in Iowa on Friday
On Friday, state health officials reported 493 new cases as well as seven new deaths, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health’s coronavirus website.
Since the pandemic was first reported within Iowa, more than 27,500 state residents have tested positive for the virus, which has resulted in 701 deaths.
Throughout Story County, as of 10 a.m. on Friday, nearly 6,700 residents have been tested for the virus.