COVID-19 cases continue to put pressure on rural hospitals

Whatever the reason, many rural hospitals, especially in the upper Midwest and Rocky Mountain states, are at or near capacity.

COVID-19 hospitalizations in North Dakota are 60 percent higher this month over October. Bed and staff shortages have some resorting to drastic measures in order to keep costs down. Medical personnel in North Dakota who test positive for the virus but have no symptoms will be allowed to continue treating other COVID-19 patients.

A number of states like Washington and Michigan announced strict lockdown measures over the weekend. States with heavy rural areas are scaling back public activity as well.

In Ohio, the governor says that he will shut down restaurants this week if the spike in cases does not come down.

A group of restaurants say that they will sue if that happens.

In Iowa, new restrictions went in place over the weekend. No groups larger than 25 can gather indoors or a hundred outdoors.

In Wisconsin, the governor created a new category higher than the “red zone,” which accounts for a hundred cases per 100,000 residents. The governor is set to announce new restrictions this week, but state lawmakers have blocked much of his past measures.

Wisconsin’s governor is adding $10 million dollars to coronavirus food security efforts. Five million dollars will go to the Hunger Task Force and Feeding Wisconsin to buy food for distribution and for storage and transportation. The state has already used $10 billion dollars in federal COVID-19 aid and $5 million dollars went to food banks to improve storage and refrigeration facilities.


Rural COVID cases are at a high for the seventh straight week

Over half of rural counties are in the COVID-19 “red zone”