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IDPH Mass Gathering Recommendations for COVID-19 (3/12/20)

IDPH Mass Gathering Recommendations for COVID-19 (3/12/20)

Author: Polly Carver-Kimm/Thursday, March 12, 2020/Categories: IDPH News

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There is currently no known community spread of COVID-19 in Iowa and IDPH is not making any recommendations to cancel planned events and mass gatherings at this time.  

“Iowa has not identified community spread of COVID-19 at this time, and absent community spread or additional guidance from our federal partners, we aren't making any recommendations to cancel events,” said Dr. Caitlin Pedati, IDPH medical director and state epidemiologist. “This is, however, a very fluid situation and we urge the public to closely monitor messaging from the Iowa Department of Public Health for updated guidance.”

The CDC has, however, provided specific guidance for high risk groups. Older adults and those with chronic health conditions should stay away from others who are sick, limit close contact with others in general, avoid crowds, and wash hands often.

The CDC also recommends that event organizers prepare for the possibility of outbreaks and ensure they have contingency plans in place should the need arise. The CDC’s guidance for mass gatherings can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/large-events/mass-gatherings-ready-for-covid-19.html.

The situation related to COVID-19 is changing rapidly, and Iowans should closely monitor messaging from the Iowa Dept of Public Health and CDC for updated guidance if or when community spread of disease is identified. 

COVID-19 was first linked to an outbreak in Wuhan, China, but cases have subsequently been identified in several countries, including the U.S. Current case counts in Iowa can be found here.

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