Oh great, another article about COVID numbers on the rise. Yes, folks, I'm afraid it is. I, like many of the rest of you, had just assumed we were moving on with our lives. We've ditched the masks and tried to forget phrases like 'social distancing'. No one wants more of this pandemic we've been suffering through the past several years. But if you thought COVID was done with us just because you were done with it? Think again.

So first, the raw data. The number of new cases of COVID in Iowa has tripled in the past few weeks. The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports the following numbers from the Iowa Department of Public Health. Yesterday, the state reported over 3,100 new cases in the past seven days. A month ago that number was at 1,063 cases per seven days. The worst of the current hot spots? Linn and Johnson counties.

Now, my completely unscientific data. It seems when infection numbers go up, you hear about more people you know that are infected. That holds true for me. I've known several people over the past few weeks who have tested positive, including my brother-in-law, who battled a 103-degree fever, body aches, and a severe cough for over a week. And he's in his 30's! While my data may be purely anecdotal, it shows that the virus is still out there.

And according to the Gazette, it is yet another variant, an omicron subvariant called BA.2. It is now the dominant COVID strain in the Midwest and the rest of the nation. I didn't write this story this morning to try and scare people into wearing masks or to push vaccines. Your health is your business. But if you thought the days of COVID were behind us, think again. Be safe, my friends.


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