DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Public health officials in Iowa’s largest county are sounding alarms that too few people are wearing masks and getting vaccinated as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations climb in the state to levels not seen since January.
The surge of the delta variant of COVID-19 comes as schools go back into session banned from requiring masks by a Republican legislature and governor.
The Iowa Department of Public Health in its weekly update Wednesday added 42 deaths, bringing the state total to 6,268 deaths.
The state reported 7,619 positive tests in the past seven days. It said 17% of the positive tests were among those under age 17, up from 13%.