More testing leads to ten new COVID-19 cases

Published: Mar. 28, 2020 at 5:12 PM CDT
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Following a dramatic expansion in testing, ten new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Douglas County. This preliminary data from the Douglas County Health Department brings the total of cases in the county to 57.

That would bring the state's total to 103.

“We have been anticipating this as testing has greatly expanded. Both Nebraska Medicine and the Nebraska Public Health Lab have increased testing,” Douglas County Health Director Dr. Adi Pour said. “For the first time we received more than 100 test results from CHI and private labs outside the health systems are now providing test results. This knowledge will allow us to better respond to the outbreak.”

These latest cases involve two women and a man in their 30s, two women and two men in their 40s, two women in their 50s and a woman in her 70s. Four of the cases had direct contact with previously known COVID-19 cases, two are related to travel and the Health Department’s Epidemiology Team continues to investigate the other cases. No one is hospitalized.

The Health Department reminds everyone to take precautions throughout the community to avoid a COVID-19 infection. You also should consider that many people who are sick have mild symptoms. According to the CDC, four out of five people who have become ill acquired the disease from someone who didn’t know they had it, so there likely are many more people in the community who are infected with COVID-19 than have been reported.

Additional cases of COVID-19 have also been identified in Buffalo, and Kearney counties by Two Rivers Public Health Department.

These cases include one Kearney County resident - A man in his 20s who is currently self-isolating, and two Buffalo County residents - A woman in her 80s and a man in his 90s who are currently hospitalized.

Contact investigations are underway to identify people who came into close contact to help prevent further spread. All identified close contacts will self-quarantine and be actively monitored twice daily by public health officials for fever and respiratory symptoms.

Please increase your awareness of the symptoms, which include a fever, cough, sore throat, or difficulty breathing. If you have COVID-19 symptoms or develop symptoms, contact your health care provider and tell them how you are feeling and any possible history of exposure, then call ahead before you go to the doctor’s office or an emergency room.

DCHD’s information line remains open to anyone with general questions about COVID-19. That number, (402) 444-3400, is answered seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. Nebraska DHHS has a COVID-19 information line open from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. daily at (402) 552-6645. Any person who has questions outside those hours is asked to call the United Way’s 2-1-1 Resource Hotline.

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