Teresa Anderson, director of the Central District Health Department
North Platte, Nebraska - The West Central District Health Department (WCDHD) has now tested 163 individuals in Lincoln County for Coronavirus (COVID-19). Of the 163 tested, 16 have been positive. Five are travel-related, four are due to contact with a traveler, three are community spread, and the remaining four are due to contact with community spread. All sixteen cases are within Lincoln County. Stay informed of new cases by visiting our website athttps://wcdhd.org/(information will be updated daily at noon and 6:00 PM).
The best antidote to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 is social and physical distancing.
Stay home and practice social and physical distancing
Avoid gatherings of 10 or more
When out stay 6 foot away from others
Cough and/or sneeze into your elbow
Wash your hands with warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds
Do not touch your face
Wear a community mask - this will help mitigate the spread of the virus
While testing continues to improve, Governor Pete Ricketts has issued a state-wide Directed Health Measure (DHM). To learn more about this DHM and how it may affect you, please visit the governor’s website atGovernor Pete Ricketts. Additionally, the governor has launched a new campaign in honor of State Health Week, asking all Nebraskans to Stay Home, Stay Healthy, and Stay Connected.
Public health officials would like to remind you that if you have a fever of over 100.4 or symptoms of respiratory illness, please self-isolate and contact your healthcare provider for additional guidance. If you are tested, have been in direct contact of a lab-confirmed case, or traveled outside of Nebraska in the last two weeks PLEASE register with WCDHD athttps://consultinglhd.sjc1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_a67PjRi6skYXMrP
CURTIS, Neb. – The May commencement ceremony for spring 2020 graduates of the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture will be held online.
NCTA officials made the decision to move to an online ceremony amid continued concerns of spread of the COVID-19 virus, said Kelly Bruns, interim NCTA dean.
The May 7 ceremony will be a pre-recorded program including messages from students, faculty, administration and other dignitaries.
An awards night program, typically held the evening before graduation, will also take place online.
More information about both the graduation ceremony and the awards night will be posted to ncta.unl.edu as details are finalized.
Additionally, NCTA will host an open house for all graduating students at a later date, tentatively scheduled for Aug. 1.
“The NCTA community is extremely proud of our graduating class and the adaptability and resilience they have demonstrated this spring,” said Kelly Bruns, interim NCTA dean. “We want to do our best to celebrate these students, even if that celebration looks a little different from most years.”
Graduates will receive their degrees on May 7. Diplomas and certificates will be mailed to the students afterwards. A program listing graduates’ names and degrees will be available for download from the NCTA website.
Regalia ordered for the ceremony will still be available to students and will be distributed at the open house in August. Student who are not able to attend in August may have their attire mailed to them.
Caps, gowns and tassels will be a gift to the graduates from NCTA. Students who have already paid for these items will receive a refund. Commemorative class belt buckles ordered by students will also be mailed.
“The NCTA faculty and staff wish our graduates the best as they start their careers,” said Bruns. “While we will not get to see them face to face at graduation we look forward to hearing of their successes as Aggie alumni.”
LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts announced that the State’s eighth COVID-19 related Directed Health Measure (DHM) includes Antelope, Arthur, Boyd, Brown, Cherry, Holt, Hooker, Keya Paha, Knox, Lincoln, Logan, McPherson, Pierce, Rock, and Thomas counties. It will be in effect beginning today at 10 pm and will last until May 11th unless renewed.
Under this new DHM, schools are closed through May 31, 2020 and extracurricular activities are also cancelled. Additionally, the new DHM cancels elective dental procedures and surgeries.
The quarantine measures are for individuals who are COVID-19 positive or develop fever, sudden onset of a dry cough, or sudden onset of shortness of breath without provocation (such as walking up stairs, running, choking, etc.). This excludes those with seasonal allergies, COPD, or other diagnoses that may produce respiratory symptoms. Additionally, the directive doesn’t apply to patients who have an alternative non-COVID-19 diagnosis from a healthcare provider. These patients should follow the treatment and guidance provided by their healthcare provider for such conditions.
The State-issued DHM now applies to 56 counties in Nebraska.
The first DHM, issued on March 18th, applies to Cass, Douglas, and Sarpy counties and is in effect until at least April 30th.
The second DHM, issued on March 25th, applies to Dodge, Lancaster, Saunders, and Washington counties and is in effect until at least May 6th.
The third DHM, issued on March 28th, applies to Butler, Hall, Hamilton, Merrick, Polk, Seward, and York counties and is in effect until May 6th unless renewed.
The fourth DHM, issued on March 29th, applies to Burt, Cuming, Madison, and Stanton counties and is in effect until May 6th unless renewed.
The fifth DHM, issued on March 30th, applies to Banner, Box Butte, Cheyenne, Dawes, Deuel, Garden, Grant, Kimball, Morrill, Scotts Bluff, Sheridan, and Sioux counties and is in effect until May 11th unless renewed.
The sixth DHM, issued on March 31st, applies to Adams, Clay, Nuckolls, and Webster counties and is in effect until May 11th unless renewed.
The seventh DHM, also issued on March 31st, applies to Buffalo, Dawson, Franklin, Gosper, Harlan, Kearney, and Phelps counties and is in effect until May 11th unless renewed.
The eighth DHM, issued on April 1st, applies to Antelope, Arthur, Boyd, Brown, Cherry, Holt, Hooker, Keya Paha, Knox, Lincoln, Logan, McPherson, Pierce, Rock, and Thomas counties and is in effect until May 11th unless renewed.
The DHM and quarantine directions covering all of these counties can be found by clicking here.
The DHM imposes an enforceable limit on public gatherings. Among other steps, the DHM requires restaurants and bars in these areas to close their dining areas immediately and move to takeout, delivery, and/or curbside service only until further notice. Additionally, schools in these areas are directed to operate without students in their buildings. This restriction does not apply to school staff working in school buildings. It also does not apply to daycares that may be operated at a school per the Governor’s executive order regarding childcare, which you can access by clicking here.
Counties other than those noted above remain under the guidance issued March 18th by the Governor’s Office. You can find it by clicking here. If further community transmission cases of COVID-19 occur in other regions of the state, the Governor will announce DHMs covering the additional regions.
In addition to the DHMs issued by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Douglas County Public Health Director Dr. Adi M. Pour has issued an order covering Douglas County from March 18, 2020 through April 30, 2020. Full details of the order can be found on the Douglas County Health Department website (douglascountyhealth.com) or by clicking here.
The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department also issued a DHM, which can be found by clicking here. The order lasts until May 6, 2020.
Furthermore, the Sarpy/Cass Health Department issued a DHM, which can be found by clicking here. The order lasts until April 30, 2020.
UNDERSTANDING THE STATE’S DIRECTED HEALTH MEASURE
Who does the Directed Health Measure apply to?
It applies to places such as theaters, churches, houses of worship, gyms, social clubs, salons, and social gatherings, including weddings, funerals, concerts, and athletic events. This is not an exhaustive list, but illustrates the types of locations the DHM applies to.
Do I need to shut down my bar or restaurant?
At bars and restaurants, it applies to patrons, not to your workforce. Restaurants and bars are encouraged to ask their patrons if they can prepare their order for takeout upon arrival. Restaurants will play a key part in feeding people throughout the pandemic.
Do I need to shut down my daycare?
No. DHHS has issued new guidance that daycares need to follow. You can find it by clicking here.
Do I need to shut down my office?
No. The Directed Health Measure does not apply to places such as office buildings, grocery stores, pharmacies, hospitals, nursing homes, correctional facilities, court houses, court rooms, banks, car dealerships, auto repair shops, nursing homes, long-term care facilities, small shops, golf courses, big box stores, gas stations, convenience stores, shopping malls, manufacturing facilities, packing facilities, construction jobs, and other traditional office settings. This is not an exhaustive list, but illustrates the types of locations the DHM does not apply to.
Furthermore, we do not expect these facilities to be impacted by additional limits at this time.
Do I need to cancel a wedding or a funeral?
Weddings and funerals are also subject to the 10-person limit. Event planners and facilities are encouraged to be flexible with people who are rearranging their plans.