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South Heartland District Health Department

One hundred residents of the South Heartland Health District were recorded as new cases of the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, Tuesday through Thursday, the district health department reported.

The new laboratory-confirmed cases include 62 in Adams County, 18 in Clay County, 12 in Nuckolls County and eight in Webster County.

Since March 18, a running total of 3,925 district residents have been diagnosed with COVID-19. They include 2,575 in Adams County, 636 in Clay County, 402 in Nuckolls County and 311 in Webster County.

“Our goal for low community spread is an average of four or fewer cases per day,” said Michele Bever, health department executive director. “Last week the district saw an average of 22 positive tests per day. In these last three days, we averaged 33 cases per day.”

Bever said she hoped the larger number of new cases per day didn’t indicate the beginning of a new spike in cases, but that it might.

“I would be disappointed, but not surprised, if this was the case, since we are coming out of the holidays,” she said. “The recent increases in travel and gatherings, loosened state-directed health measure restrictions, and schools and colleges out of session for the holidays, might mean there were more close contacts and more opportunities for the virus to spread.”

To help thwart further spread of the virus, Bever is reminding constituents to practice “the Three Cs,” avoiding crowded places, avoiding close contact with people they don’t live with, and avoiding confined spaces with poor ventilation.

“Continue to practice prevention, using all of the tools we have,” she said. “We need to stay home when we have symptoms, wash our hands frequently, keep 6 feet way from people we don’t live with, wear our masks to protect ourselves and others, and get the COVID-19 vaccine when it is our turn.”

Bever said 1,539 doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered in the health district since mid-December 2020.

“We are continuing to work on the first priority group, called Phase 1A, which includes health care personnel and long-term care facility residents and staff,” she said. “Everyone in each phase can be vaccinated as soon as there are enough vaccines available.”

In the neighboring Two Rivers Public Health Department to the west, new case tallies for Tribland counties for Sunday through Wednesday include five in Kearney County, one in Franklin County and two in Harlan County.

For more local COVID-19 statistics in the two health districts visit www.southheartlandhealth.org or www.trphd.org.

Mary Lanning
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