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South Heartland District Health Department

A total of 27 new cases of the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, were confirmed Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in the South Heartland Health District.

The district health department reported the new cases, 23 of which involve Adams County residents, in a news release Thursday night.

Two of the new cases are in Nuckolls County, one is in Clay County, and one is in Webster County.

Three of the new patients required in-patient treatment in hospitals.

Since March 18, 540 cases of COVID-19 have been recorded in Adams County along with 76 in Clay County, 19 in Webster County and 15 in Nuckolls County, for a districtwide total to date of 650.

Michele Bever, health department executive director, said one hospitalized COVID-19 patient who had been reported to South Heartland as a Clay County resident was determined to live in another county outside the health district, and that Clay County and South Heartland statistics were revised accordingly.

To date, 37 South Heartland residents have spent time in a hospital in connection with a COVID-19 diagnosis. A total of 12 patients — all Adams County residents — have died.

As of Thursday, a total of 534 South Heartland COVID-19 cases had been classified as recovered. That’s 82% of the total number of positive cases confirmed since March.

“We count as recoveries the individuals who tested positive and have completed their isolation period. This means that at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared AND at least 24 hours have passed since last fever without the use of fever-reducing medications AND symptoms have improved,” Bever said.

On Wednesday, South Heartland announced that the district’s risk dial reading, assessing the risk of further spread of the novel coronavirus, has risen into the “elevated” (orange) zone for this week. The increase is attributable in part to a trend of rising weekly new case numbers.

For the week of Sept. 13-19, 53 new positive cases were recorded in the district.

In Thursday’s press dispatch, Bever urged residents to do their part in protecting others.

“This means keeping physically distanced from others, wearing cloth face coverings when we are around others, staying home when we have any symptoms, washing our hands, and disinfecting frequently-touched surfaces,” she said.

“We can make a difference in the overall risk for spread of COVID-19 in our communities. Our actions affect others. Please help us turn this trend around by reducing opportunities for the virus to spread from person to person. Let’s keep up the ‘I’ll protect you, you protect me’ approach to keeping our schools, worksites, and events safe.”

For detailed South Heartland COVID-19 statistics, visit the health department website, southheartlandhealth.org. State statistics are available at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/Coronavirus.

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