Pocahontas County Health Department is a pick-up site for at-home COVID-19 test kits.

The Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) and State Hygienic Laboratory (SHL) recently announced that Test Iowa will end operations on July 16, 2021. An at-home test kit program will be provided to Iowans free of charge following the closure of Test Iowa. Iowans will be able to receive at-home saliva test kits via direct shipping to the requestor’s home or by picking up test kits at local pick-up sites like Pocahontas County Health Department. The test sample is returned by the patient to the State Hygienic Laboratory using a prepaid label included with the test kit.

For more information on the at-home COVID-19 test kits or to call ahead to pick one up, please call Pocahontas County Health Department at 712-335-4142.

CDC’s Independent Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) Authorizes Additional Vaccine Dose for Certain Immunocompromised Individuals

Effective August 13, 2021, CDC recommends that people who are moderately to severely immunocompromised receive an additional dose of an mRNA COVID-19 Vaccine (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) at least 28 days after the completion of the initial mRNA COVID-19 vaccine series. Available data show that these people don’t always build adequate levels of protection after an initial 2-dose primary mRNA COVID-19 vaccine series. The data also show that they may benefit from receiving an additional dose of an mRNA vaccine to develop as much protection as possible against COVID-19.

Currently, CDC is recommending that moderately to severely immunocompromised people receive an additional dose. This includes people who have:

  • Active treatment for solid tumor and hematologic malignancies
  • Receipt of solid-organ transplant and taking immunosuppressive therapy
  • Receipt of CAR-T-cell or hematopoietic stem cell transplant (within 2 years of transplantation or taking immunosuppression therapy)
  • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (e.g., DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome)
  • Advanced or untreated HIV infection
  • Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids (i.e., ≥20mg prednisone or equivalent per day), alkylating agents, antimetabolites, transplant-related immunosuppressive drugs, cancer chemotherapeutic agents classified as severely immunosuppressive, tumor-necrosis (TNF) blockers, and other biologic agents that are immunosuppressive or immunomodulatory.

Fully vaccinated people with healthy immune systems do not need another dose of COVID-19 vaccine at this time.

HHS Releases plan for COVID-19 Booster Doses for all Americans

On August 18, 2021, Health and Human Services (HHS) public health and medical experts released a joint statement on the plan for COVID-19 booster doses to offer all Americans beginning the week of September 20, 2021 and starting eight months after an individual’s second dose. At that time, the individuals who were fully vaccinated earliest in the vaccination rollout, including many health care providers, nursing home residents, and other seniors, will likely be eligible for a booster.

HHS, CDC, and FDA continue to study data to understand how long vaccine protection lasts. The authorized COVID-19 vaccines continue to effectively reduce the risk of severe disease, hospitalization, and death, even against the highly prevalent Delta variant. Evidence has shown that over time vaccines provide less protection against mild and moderate COVID-19 disease in certain populations. People who are at higher risk or were vaccinated during the earlier phases of the vaccination rollout might need a booster dose to continue to have the maximum protection that the vaccines provide.

CDC’s independent advisory committee, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), will continue to meet and discuss data on the evolution of the pandemic and the use of COVID-19 vaccines. ACIP will make further recommendations on the use of boosters for the public after a thorough review of the evidence.

If you are moderately to severely immunocompromised, you can receive an additional dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at our office. Please call 712-335-4142 to schedule an appointment.

***Please remember that Pocahontas County Health Department is required to follow the guidance set forth from Iowa Department of Public Health, ACIP and the CDC for the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine in Pocahontas County. We will continue to provide accurate and updated information via local media, like newspapers and radio, our Pocahontas County website (link is above), or you can follow “Public Health of Pocahontas, Iowa” on Facebook.***

About the Department

Mission Statement

The purpose of the Health Department shall be to prevent disease, promote rehabilitation, and provide health education.

Department Duties & Services
  • Skilled Home Care
  • Adult & Child Immunizations
  • Communicable Disease Program
  • Maternal Child Adolescent Health
  • Health Screenings, Assessment & Education
  • Emergency Preparedness
  • Lifeline
  • DME loan closet
Pocahontas County Board of Health

The Pocahontas County Board of Health supports local public health vision, mission, and advocacy and encourage community involvement in setting public health priorities.

Current Board Members:

  • Donna Stall
  • Connie Harmon
  • Joe Kramer
  • Kyle Smith
  • Dr. Ted George

Duties of the Board of Health

  1. Appoint a qualified Administrator; administrative and supervisory functions shall not be delegated to another Agency or organization.
  2. Adopt and periodically review the Agency’s policies governing operations of the Health Department.
  3. Oversee the management and fiscal affairs of the Agency. This shall include participation in preparing the annual operating budget and capital expenditure plan with final approval granted.
  4. Meet regularly as needed to conduct business, and when called by Chairperson they will conduct meetings in accordance with State of Iowa open meeting law.
  5. Establish a fee schedule for the service by the Health Department according to the cost of provision of said service. A sliding fee scale will be adopted considering income and family size.