Iowa schools near meatpacking plants lack extra guidance on virus

Iowa – A meatpacking plant is one of the most dangerous places to work, the risk of injury high and illness can spread quickly on the crowded killing floors.

Iowa counties with the highest rates of COVID-19 infection are home to large meat packing plants. Already at risk for outbreaks at work, families here face sending their children back to classrooms where rates of transmission among students and teachers aren’t fully understood.

There are no plans from health officials to address an outbreak at a school with ties to a meatpacking plant; the current direction is that counties work with the local department of health to determine appropriate steps, according to a review by IowaWatch. Iowa saw several outbreaks at plants in the spring.

The Iowa Department of Public Health did not respond to multiple requests for information.

Recent studies released by the Journal of the American Medical Association and the Centers for disease control show transmission and infection rates among kids is higher than originally anticipated. Serious illness that can result from a COVID19 infection have impacted relatively few children in the United States but studies are ongoing.

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