Southwest Nebraska Public Health Department (SWNPHD) recommends anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 get tested and stay home while waiting for results. COVID-19 symptoms may include one or more: loss of taste or smell, sore throat, cough, shortness of breath, fever, loss of appetite, diarrhea, abdominal pain, nausea, fatigue, muscle aches, head ache, chills and shaking Anyone waiting for COVID-19 test results is required to self-isolate, so that no one else is exposed while they are waiting.
- If the test is negative, then self-isolation is over once all the symptoms are better.
- If the test is positive, then isolation continues at least 10 days and until public health officials confirm the person is no longer contagious.
After someone tests positive and self-isolates at home, anyone else who lives in the home is required to self-quarantine for 14 days.
- If the sick person can isolate away from others in the home, then quarantine is 14 days from the last contact with the sick person.
- If the sick person cannot be separate from others in the home, then quarantine is 14 days after the sick person is recovered and released from isolation.
The COVID-19 Community Risk Dial for the week of August 10th is yellow. Residents of southwest Nebraska should use caution when at gatherings or in public, including avoiding high-touch surfaces and wearing a mask. Choose outdoor activities when possible and avoid close contact in enclosed spaces. Those who are at higher risk of complications from COVID-19 should stay home.
Additionally, in the past seven days SWNPHD has been notified of 12 people from the health district that have tested positive for COVID-19.
New cases include the following:
- One Hitchcock County resident – a male in his 30’s, related to direct contact with another confirmed case of COVID-19.
- One Chase County resident – a male in his 60’s, related to travel.
- One Furnas County resident – a male in his 50’s related to direct contact.
- One Red Willow County resident – a female in her 60’s related to community spread.
- Two Perkins County residents – a male in his teens and a female in her 80’s, both related to direct contact.
- Five Keith County residents – a male in his 60’s and a female in her 30’s related to direct contact, a female in her 40’s and a female in her 60’s both related to travel, and a female in her 50’s related to community spread.
These cases bring the total to 91 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Fifty-four of the cases have recovered.
SWNPHD regrets to announce that five more deaths related to COVID-19 have been confirmed in the health district in the last week. All were individuals over the age of 80, including one male and four females. This brings the total to eight deaths due to COVID-19 in SWNPHD.
“The higher numbers of cases and deaths in the last few weeks highlights the importance of separating those who are sick from the rest of the public,” states Melissa Propp, RN Public Health Nurse. “Please stay home if you have any symptoms–don’t wait until you feel ‘sick enough’ to stay home. It doesn’t take severe symptoms to pass it on; if you have mild symptoms you still spread the virus, and you may spread it to someone who cares for a vulnerable person.”
For more information on COVID-19 in southwest Nebraska, visit www.swhealth.ne.gov. You can also follow SWNPHD on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. SWNPHD serves Chase, Dundy, Frontier, Furnas, Hayes, Hitchcock, Keith, Perkins, and Red Willow counties. SWNPHD is located at 404 West 10th St in McCook.