Updated Quarantine Guidelines

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) has changed quarantine recommendations for people exposed to a positive case of COVID-19. Please note the following as you read:

• This new guidance applies to business, education and child-care setting exposures. It does NOT apply to exposures in household or health care settings. Household members of positive COVID-19 cases still need to quarantine for 14 days.
• Gaiters and face shields are not considered acceptable face coverings. See the CDC guidance for face coverings: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/about-face-coverings.html


Contact: Amy McCoy
[email protected]

IDPH Adjusts Quarantine Recommendations

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) is making a change on quarantine recommendations for people that have been exposed to a positive case of COVID-19. This applies in non-healthcare, non-residential settings only. This includes businesses, education and child care settings.

  • Close contacts of COVID-positive cases will no longer need to quarantine for 14 days if a face covering was worn consistently and correctly by the positive case and close contacts. The positive case must isolate. The close contacts should self-monitor.
    • Self-monitoring entails close monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms over the subsequent 14 days, staying home if any symptoms develop, and speaking with a healthcare provider about COVID-19 testing in the case of any illness.
    • If people who are self-monitoring become ill but do not get tested, they should remain home until 10 days after symptom onset.
  • People currently in quarantine may be released from quarantine if a face covering was worn consistently and correctly by the positive case and close contacts during exposure.
  • If the positive case wore a face covering, but close contacts did not, those close contacts must be quarantined.
  • If the positive case did not wear a face covering, close contacts must quarantine whether or not they wore a face covering.
  • Quarantine of close contacts will still be necessary in residential and healthcare settings.

Please find an infographic depicting the new IDPH recommendations at https://idph.iowa.gov/Portals/1/userfiles/61/covid19/resources/WhenToQuarantine.pdf

Masks are proven to be effective in preventing the spread of COVID-19. Increased mask use will reduce the number of individuals that need to quarantine. Along with wearing a face covering, we ask that everyone continue all recommended public health strategies:

  • Stay home when sick.
  • Maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet whenever possible.
  • Wash hands frequently.

This approach is based on data and focused feedback from community and school leaders over the past month indicating that transmission is not frequently occurring when both parties are wearing face coverings consistently and correctly. Additionally, we are aware of other jurisdictions, including Nebraska and Wyoming, that have made similar changes based on experiences in their states. We will continue to make recommendations based on best available information and adjust when needed.

Statement on High Positivity and Additional Cases

Sioux County is currently experiencing a number of additional COVID-19 cases. We urge every resident to take steps to protect the health of themselves and their families. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus. Avoid gatherings. Stay at least six feet away from others at all times. Wear a mask or face covering when you have to be around others. Older people and those with underlying health conditions like heart problems, diabetes, or obesity are at increased risk of serious complications from this virus, so they should take extra precautions. If you’re sick, stay home.

Since there is no vaccine for this virus, you are the best weapon we have in slowing the spread of this disease.

Sioux County Board of Health Position Statement

August 27, 2020

Sioux County Board of Health Position Statement

As our local schools open and fall activities begin, the Sioux County Board of Health asks that everyone in Sioux County take an active role in reducing the spread of Covid-19 in our community.

Based on guidance and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), the Sioux County Board of Health recommends that individuals and visitors in Sioux County:

  • Wear a cloth face covering in public and when around people who do not live in your household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain. Face coverings should cover your nose and mouth. Masks should not be worn by children under the age of 2 or by anyone who has trouble breathing or would be unable to remove the mask without assistance.
  • Distance yourself at least 6 feet apart from others, when possible. Covid-19 spreads most often among people who are in close contact.
  • Stay home when you are ill.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with your elbow.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces.
  • Consider your level of risk before attending group activities.

Sioux County Board of Health

Dr. Lee Kamstra, Chairperson
Jeanene Kuiper, Vice Chairperson
Shari Fedders
Barbara Top
Matt Visser

Sioux County Confirms Outbreak in a Long-Term Care Center

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) and Sioux County Public Health (Community Health Partners/CHP) have identified 4 positive resident cases of COVID-19 at Prairie Ridge Care Center a long-term care facility in Sioux County. According to IDPH, an outbreak occurs when three or more cases of COVID-19 are identified among residents of a facility.

The facility has notified residents and their families, and consistent with IDPH guidelines, the affected residents are in isolation. Prairie Ridge staff are working closely with IDPH and CHP to protect the health of all residents and staff, with additional testing of residents and staff as directed by IDPH.

“Protecting the health and wellbeing of the residents and staff is the highest priority of Prairie Ridge and CHP,” said Sioux County Public Health (CHP) Director, Kim Westerholm. “We know our older population is at the highest risk for serious COVID-19 illness, so we and Prairie Ridge are monitoring the situation carefully and taking the highest precautions to prevent virus spread.”

As of today, 7/30, there are 575 total cases of COVID-19 in Sioux County. CHP continues to work closely with IDPH, and other state and local partners to respond to this ongoing pandemic.

For up-to-date information on COVID-19, including an interactive map with county, regional and long-term care outbreak information, visit: coronavirus.iowa.gov

Additional COVID-19 cases in Sioux County

1 child (0-18)

1 adult (19-40)

The individuals are in isolation.


Sioux County total positive cases: 25


Take these steps to prevent the spread to yourself and others:

*stay home if you or anyone in your home has any symptoms of illness

*maintain a distance of 6 feet from others

*clean your hands often

*cover your coughs and sneezes

*clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces


For more COVID-19 prevention information including case counts in Iowa see:  https://coronavirus.iowa.gov/#prevention

Questions about Coronavirus?

Sioux County Public Health is advising community members about what they can do now to prepare for the potential spread of the novel coronavirus known as COVID-19. 

Sioux County Public Health will continue to work with the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and with our local partners.

In the meantime, community members should prepare for the potential of COVID-19 in the same way they prepare for severe weather or other events that could disrupt their normal routine. For example: What would you do if you could not go to work or school because of illness? What if your daycare provider was ill? How would you get groceries if you were ill?

Everyone can help prevent the spread of all viruses, including influenza and coronavirus (COVID-19) in the following ways:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your mouth with your upper arm or tissue when coughing or sneezing
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces

For a printable poster with this information in English and Spanish, click here.

For information and updates related to COVID-19, visit https://idph.iowa.gov/Emerging-Health-Issues/Novel-Coronavirus and follow IDPH on Facebook (@IowaDepartmentofPublicHealth) and Twitter (@IAPublicHealth). The CDC’s COVID-19 page contains information on how to keep yourself and you family safe. You can also sign up for updates from Governor Reynolds’ office here.

A public hotline has been established for Iowans with questions about COVID-19. This line is available 24/7 by calling 2-1-1.

Radon Levels in Many Sioux County Homes are High

Radon is a naturally occurring gas that can build up in your home. It is the leading cause of lung cancer in people who do not smoke. You can’t see radon. Or smell it. Or taste it. You can’t tell if there is radon in your home unless you test for it. Homes should be tested for radon every 3-4 years. High levels of radon can be found in any type of home.

Iowa has the highest average radon concentration of any state in the U.S., with 7 of 10 homes having a radon concentration above 4pCi/L, which is considered too high. Residents of Sioux County should be keenly aware of radon and the dangers it poses since average Sioux County levels are much higher even than the State of Iowa:

  • United States average: 1.3 pCi/L
  • Iowa average: 8.5 pCi/L
  • Sioux County average: 11.1 pCI/L

Testing your home for radon is simple and inexpensive. Radon test kits are available through Community Health Partners and at city offices throughout Sioux County. To encourage winter testing, Community Health Partners is offering test kits at a reduced cost of $5 per kit through the end of February. Directions are included in the kit. It is important to test your home during winter months when doors and windows have been kept closed. If test results show elevated radon levels, you should talk to a certified radon mitigation specialist. They will work with you to reduce the level of radon in your home.

For more information about radon, see http://www.lung.org/radon, call the American Lung Association of Iowa at 515.309.9507, or email [email protected]. For more information about radon test kits, contact Community Health Partners of Sioux County (712) 737-2971 or [email protected]

Completing your radon test is easy. Directions are included with your kit, or you can watch this video from Jesse Green with American Radon Mitigation.

Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=edDvcsoO9QY


Prevent Diabetes NW Iowa Coming to Orange City

A regional effort to prevent diabetes

If you:

  • Are overweight, or
  • Have Pre-Diabetes, or
  • Had gestational diabetes or
  • Have a family history of diabetes

You are at risk for Type 2 Diabetes

If you are at risk for Type 2 Diabetes, there is something you can do:

Join our lifestyle change program proven to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.
It includes 22 sessions over 12 months led by trained lifestyle coaches who will help you lose weight, eat healthier, be more physically active, and manage stress, all while receiving group support from other participants.

Informational Session Thursday, February 6, 5-6 pm

When: Thursdays, beginning February 13
Time: 5-6 pm
Where: Orange City Area Health System Downtown Campus
Cost: $175 (You can earn $75 back by attending regularly

Click Here or call 712.737.2971

Sponsored by:

Explore Sioux County’s Parks

Need ideas for summer family activities? Consider taking a family trip to one of Sioux County’s twenty-four parks and wildlife areas. The link below includes description of each park and lists of available activities for all ages and skill levels.


For an interactive map of all Iowa parks, including those in Sioux County, click here:

Check out each location’s on-site activities and points of interest, or try out other ideas here. Our favorites are Water Relays and Capture the Flag!

There are also educational activities, games for the car ride, and delicious picnic recipes!

Plan for a successful trip. Check the forecast before you leave. Go in the mornings, evenings, or try to stay in the shade between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. to avoid sunburns. Bring these along to make sure everyone stays happy and healthy:

• Sunscreen (don’t forget to reapply according to directions)

• Sunglasses

• Hat

• Insect repellent

• First aid kit

• Snacks

• Water

• Hand sanitizer/wet wipes

• Life jacket for water activities (make sure it fits properly)

For more information about Sioux County’s parks and wildlife areas, contact the Sioux County Conservation Board.

Do you have photos from your trip? We’d love to see them! Use the hashtag #MyCountyParks to show us your adventures in Sioux County’s beautiful parks and wildlife areas!