Public Health News_120921


Black Hawk County Public Health News

December 9, 2021  


The Iowa Department of Public Health and the State Hygienic Lab (SHL) confirm detection of the first case of the COVID-19 variant, Omicron, in an Iowa resident. The case occurred in an unvaccinated individual under the age of 18 who resides in Black Hawk County. The individual remains asymptomatic, however because of travel exposure, the family sought testing on public health guidance. Proactive measures taken by the involved family, public health officials, along with support provided by SHL, show the strength of our public health process.

“There is emerging evidence that a booster dose of vaccine offers protection against Omicron, which is great news. Vaccinated Iowans who have not yet received a booster should do so as soon as possible,” said IDPH interim Director Kelly Garcia. “I want to emphasize how grateful I am to Iowans who have chosen to get vaccinated, thank you. To those who haven’t been vaccinated for COVID-19 yet, I urge you to speak with your health care provider about the vaccine’s benefits for you and those around you”.

 Omicron was first reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) by South Africa on November 24, 2021 and designated by WHO as a variant of concern on November 26. As of 11:00 am today, Omicron has been detected in 22 states including Iowa.



18.8% = 14-Day Average Percent Positive in Black Hawk County

 101 New Positive Cases for 12/9/21

Black Hawk County residents that have received at least one COVID-19vaccine as of 12/5/21 by age:

 70% (18+)           9% (5-11)          58.3% (12-17)          39.3% (18-24)

During the week of 11/29/21 – 12/5/21 542 individuals received their initial COVID-19 vaccine, 1,043 received their second dose and 2,636 received their booster or third dose.



There is emerging evidence that a booster dose of vaccine offers protection against Omicron as well as documented evidence that the vaccine offers protection from Delta, the dominant variant currently circulating in Iowa and the United States.

·      NEW: Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration amended the emergency use authorization for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, authorizing the use of a single booster dose for administration to individuals 16 and 17 years of age at least6 months after completion of their primary vaccine. Following approval from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the booster dose may be administered throughout the United States.  

·      Everyone 18 and over who completed their primary vaccination series with Pfizer or Moderna is eligible to receive a single booster dose 6 months following completion of their primary series.

·      All Johnson and Johnson recipients should get a booster dose at least 2 months after their initial shot.

·      Eligible individuals may choose which vaccine they receive as a booster dose.


The use of a booster doses helps to provide continued protection against COVID-19, including the serious consequences that can occur, such as hospitalization and death.



Iowans have the option for free at-home testing and may choose to pick up a test kit from a site in their community or have a kit sent to their home at no cost. Each test kit includes instructions on how to collect and ship the specimen. For more information and to find a location near you visit Activated and completed test kits can be dropped off at: Peoples Community Health Clinic, 905 Franklin Street, Waterloo. Tests received by 1 pm, Monday-Friday, will be transported the same day to the State Hygienic Lab, with results expected within 24 hours. Tests dropped off after 1 pm on Friday, will be transported the following Monday. Tests can also be dropped off at any UPS location. Find a UPS location here:


For information related to COVID-19, visit and follow us on Facebook(@BlackHawkCountyHealthDepartment) and Twitter (@BHCHD).