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The original item was published from 8/19/2020 1:45:15 PM to 8/19/2020 1:48:31 PM.

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Public Health

Posted on: August 19, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Willow Gardens Care Center Recovers from COVID-19 Outbreak

COVID-19 Update

LINN COUNTY, IA – As of August 17, 2020, Willow Gardens Care Center, a long-term care facility in Linn County, has recovered from the COVID-19 outbreak, which began affecting the facility in June. Recovery is defined as no new cases for two consecutive incubation periods, or 28 days.

Willow Gardens Care Center is one of seven long-term care facilities in Linn County that experienced an outbreak of COVID-19. A total of 39 residents and staff tested positive for COVID-19, 35 individuals recovered, and four residents have died.

Linn County Public Health and Willow Gardens Care Center worked diligently to stop the spread of COVID-19, with assistance from the Iowa Department of Public Health. Upon identification of the outbreak, Willow Gardens Care Center increased measures to prevent spread of the virus by limiting all visitors, increasing screening for staff and residents for symptoms of COVID-19, isolating ill residents with dedicated staff, isolating new residents upon admission, and implementing additional infection prevention practices. Additionally, personal protective equipment availability was assessed, and adequate supplies were ensured to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

COVID-19 spreads easily and rapidly in settings where people live close together. Older adults and those with underlying medical conditions are at an increased risk of severe complications or death due to COVID-19 infection. While many Iowans and volunteers work to clear remaining storm debris after last weeks’ severe storm, and distribute supplies to those in need, Linn County Public Health reminds everyone to continue earlier measures that help prevent spread of COVID-19 within the community and to high-risk individuals such as those living in long-term care facilities, including:

Washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol, if soap and water are unavailable,

Covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow,

Practicing social distancing by maintaining 6 feet between yourself and others, when possible, and

Wearing a cloth face covering or mask when social distancing is not possible.

For more information on COVID-19, call 2-1-1 or visit



Linn County Public Health, an agency within Linn County government, serves more than 225,000 residents of Linn County to prevent disease and injury, promote healthy living, protect the environment, and ensure public health preparedness. Learn more at or by calling 319-892-6000. Like us on Facebook at and follow us on Twitter @LCPublicHealth.

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