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UPDATE: New high of 740 new coronavirus cases Friday, 8 new deaths as 77 Iowa counties allowed to reopen

UPDATE: New high of 740 new coronavirus cases Friday, 8 new deaths as 77 Iowa counties allowed to reopen

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DES MOINES -- The state of Iowa hit a record high number of new coronavirus cases in a 24-hour period on Friday, the day restrictions on businesses in 77 of Iowa's 99 counties expired.

Gov. Kim Reynolds said 85% of the 740 new cases reported Friday were from the 22 counties where restrictions on businesses will persist until May 15, and 516 of those cases were from just four of those hard-hit counties: Black Hawk, Dallas, Polk and Woodbury.

"We opened test sites in Des Moines and Waterloo, and this has created a high volume of tests coming into the State Hygenic Lab," Reynolds said. She added that has created a "backlog," but she said the lab will "get caught up" on those test kits over the weekend.

Reynolds said she believed the state has "met" its peak of coronavirus cases, and said although higher numbers would be reported over the weekend, that would be due to clearing out the backlog of test kits.

But six counties also added their first coronavirus case Friday, including Floyd County, meaning 91 of Iowa's 99 counties now had at least one positive case.

The governor also reported eight new deaths, including one in Bremer County, for a total of 170 deaths from COVID-19 statewide. She noted most of the deaths are among older adults and those with underlying health conditions.

A total of 7,885 Iowans have tested positive for coronavirus and 345 were currently hospitalized with COVID-19, while 37% of people had recovered.

According to IDPH, 48 people were currently hospitalized in Black Hawk County, as well as one hospitalized in Floyd County, one in Grundy County, two in Hardin County, one in Mitchell County and eight in Tama County.

Among the state's 24 long-term care facility outbreaks, Harmony House in Black Hawk County has recorded 28 cases, Bartels Lutheran Retirement Community has recorded 29 cases, the Iowa Veterans Home in Marshall County has recorded 22 cases, Premiere Estates of Toledo in Tama County has recorded 52 cases and Westbrook Acres in Tama County has recorded seven cases.

Black Hawk County officials said Friday the county has a total of 1,471 cases, a gain of 90 cases over Thursday, and was steady at 13 deaths.

Allamakee County added one case for a total of 90 cases and three deaths as of Friday. Fayette County added one case for a total of 21 cases.

Floyd County recorded its first case of coronavirus Friday, an older adult between the ages of 61 and 80 who was hospitalized.

Franklin County added one case for a total of three cases. Hardin County added one case for a total of nine cases.

Mitchell County added one case for a total of three cases. Tama County added four cases for a total of 270 cases and seven deaths.

Winneshiek County added two cases for a total of 17 cases.

The governor also said spiritual and religious gatherings were now open statewide, including in the 22 restricted counties, and said that included weddings except for receptions and funerals except for visitations. Guidance for churches and others was available at coronavirus.iowa.gov.

"We know this is a difficult time, and Iowans need to continue to be responsible in protecting the health of themselves and their communities," Reynolds said.

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