Governor Reynolds.

Governor Kim Reynolds today said the state is “shifting strategies” and entering a new phase in the pandemic.

“You know, Iowans can be proud of what we’re doing,” Reynolds said during her daily news conference. “You should be proud of what we’re doing. We are leading and we’re leading by example and we’re doing to continue to lead.”

The governor says early efforts were aimed at preserving protective equipment and ensuring hospitals had the capacity to care for COVID-19 patients.

“We’re shifting in the way that we’re talking about the virus and how we maintain it,” Reynolds said.

With more testing and “hot spots” around the state identified, the governor said she’s making prudent decisions about lifting closure orders and allowing businesses to reopen.

“It’s not perfect,” Reynolds said, “but I think we’re doing everything we can to really take care of Iowans in a responsible way, but also to get this economy up and going so Iowans can get back to work and we can do everything we can to get somewhat back to normal.”

The governor’s latest proclamation lets more Iowa businesses reopen. That includes furniture stores, florists, retailers that sell clothes and shoes as well as adult entertainment stores in the 22 counties where state officials say virus activity is highest. Reynolds said it’s a matter of fairness and she trusts Iowans to make the right decision for their personal situation.

“We’re changing our strategy, I think, about how we looking at this,” Reynolds said. “…We’re looking at to containing and managing, which allows us to open up in a very safe and responsible way. You know we’re not opening them up at full capacity.”

The governor said the state’s meat-packing plants are becoming a “well-oiled machine” again as workers are tested and production resumes. The state website with COVID-19 test data has been revamped. It shows a dozen more Iowans have died of the virus and 655 new cases of COVID-19 have been identified through test results reported to the state.