Summary
Authorities in Iowa have issued orders to maintain certain restrictions in place to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) until at least Nov. 15. Under current directives, all businesses may open statewide but must follow certain guidelines to operate. Officials strongly encourage residents over the age of two to use facemasks in public settings and for those over the age of 65 or who have preexisting medical conditions to remain at home as much as possible.

Bars and restaurants can operate without capacity limits but must ensure all patrons are seated; tables must be placed at least 1.8 meters (6 feet) from one another or barriers must be installed to separate customers. Other businesses, including retail stores, indoor entertainment venues, gyms and fitness centers, and malls, can also operate without specific capacity limits; however, they must enforce social distancing guidelines requiring patrons to keep at least 1.8 meters (6 feet) from each other and reduce gatherings. All businesses must implement enhanced sanitation procedures and provide the necessary protective equipment to employees.

Gatherings of more than 10 people are allowed, as long as participants maintain proper distance and follow other hygiene measures.

Authorities could reimpose, extend, further ease, or otherwise amend any restrictions with little-to-no notice depending on disease activity over the coming weeks.

Advice
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.

Resources