This just in from Progress Iowa:
Rep. Cindy Axne, Iowans Speak Up for Seniors Amid Pandemic
Coronavirus, Poor Leadership from Gov. Reynolds Reveals Struggles in Care Centers
(Des Moines, Iowa) — Thursday, Rep. Cindy Axne, Glenn Hurst, Executive Director of Iowa Citizen Action Network Sue Dinsdale, and Citizen Activist Vicky Brenner spoke at a virtual town hall hosted by Protect Our Care, Iowa Voices, Lower Drug Prices Now Iowa, Iowa Alliance for Retired Americans, Iowa Citizen Action Network, and Progress Iowa to prioritize those most affected by coronavirus: those in care centers and seniors. Speakers discussed the impact of the state health department’s decision to withhold information on outbreaks at assisted living facilities and the Reynolds administration’s leniency toward businesses rather than people.
There has never been a more important time to focus on the well being of Iowa’s seniors, especially as individuals older than 60 account for 88% of coronavirus deaths in Iowa. And as care centers saw another rise in outbreaks this week, there are even more concerns for safety.
Speakers discussed the need for transparency and stricter guidelines to protect seniors and individuals in care centers:
“In Iowa where we’re seeing the vast majority of cases and deaths impacting older Iowans, I find it appalling that we’re not pushing testing out to skilled nursing centers, to assisted living, making sure that anybody in the older population has access to testing and has an opportunity to feel they are in a safe environment. I’m adamant to make sure we address these issues, which is why I wrote a letter to the Governor.”
-Representative Cindy Axne
“We have to have a public uprising to say this is not acceptable, these are our parents, these are our friends, these are our neighbors, these are people who have contributed to our communities.
-Representative Cindy Axne
“We need to make sure, at the bare minimum, that we are fully funding Medicaid and fully funding the expense of the care for seniors. These people dedicated their lives to our homes and our communities and to leave them hanging out to dry, in essence, is heartbreaking.”
-Dr. Glenn Hurst
“We face a severe shortage of workers because the system is so broken, and COVID has pushed it over the cliff. My mom and others like her are sitting ducks in a petri dish, and on top of that, the people who care for them are asked to do more and more with fewer resources. Like me, healthcare workers in long term care are broken hearted, angry and overwhelmed.”
Here is a link to the town hall meeting (43 minutes).
~Progress Iowa is a multi-issue progressive advocacy organization with a network of more than 75,000 progressives. Year-round, Progress Iowa advocates for a stronger middle class, first-class public education, and fairness for all Iowans under the law.