Positive Signs in Iowa’s Fight Against COVID-19
Things are looking up this week in Iowa's fight against COVID-19.
Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine arrived at Iowa hospitals this week including Mercy Medical and St. Luke's in Cedar Rapids. According to Iowa's News Now, one Mercy Medical Center administrator described the arrival in hopeful terms, calling it a "light at the end of the tunnel."
Mercy Medical Center's Vice President of medical affairs, Dr. Tony Myers told Iowa's News Now "We start with the people that are directly taking care of the COVID patients and people that are at higher risk." There are reports from the AP that the vaccine developed by Moderna is also close to being approved for use by the FDA which would accelerate the process.
Another hopeful sign is the news from Associated Press that virus cases in Iowa have dropped in the past two weeks. Sadly during that same time frame, the number of deaths has continued to rise.
Iowa teachers, parents, students, and other community members raised money to create a $10,000 Scholarship Fund to be named after Jason Englert, the 38-year-old teacher from the Des Moines area who died on November 8 of acute respiratory distress after exposure to the virus. KCCI reports the scholarship fund drive was started by one of his co-workers, Marne Markwardt, a kindergarten teacher.
The family of a 65-year-old Iowa man who died of COVID-19 has filed suit against the man's employer, Tyson Foods in Storm Lake. KCRG said the lawsuit claims that Tyson Foods did not do enough to properly protect its workers in the early days and weeks of the pandemic, which led to the illness and subsequent death of Michael Everhard of Fonda, Iowa. He died on June 18, just three weeks after he contracted the virus.