The South Heartland District Health Department on Thursday morning issued a news release especially urging all residents of Sutton to be on the watch for symptoms of the novel coronavirus disease, COVID-19, amid indications of community spread there.

While South Heartland continues to promote vigilance throughout the four-county district, residents of Sutton at this time are being urged to self-monitor for any symptoms, including checking their temperatures twice daily.

South Heartland, which has offices in Hastings, serves Adams, Webster, Clay and Nuckolls counties. As of Wednesday night, a total of 286 positive cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in the district since March 18, including 257 in Adams County, 23 in Clay County, five in Webster County and one in Nuckolls County. 

As of Monday night, a total of 175 of the patients had recovered, including 162 in Adams County, eight in Clay County, four in Webster County and one in Nuckolls County.

Eleven of the patients have died. All the fatalities to date have been in Adams County.

The full text of Thursday's news release follows:

Hastings, Neb. — SHDHD previously reported community spread of COVID-19 in Clay County, which means that SHDHD’s investigations have been unable to determine the source of exposure for some cases. Recent information shows spread in Sutton, NE, and ​SHDHD is asking all residents to self-monitor for symptoms along with temperature checks twice daily.

Self-monitoring helps you to identify early symptoms.

Stay home (isolate at home) if you or a family member/household contact have any symptoms consistent with COVID-19. Contact your local provider or SHDHD for testing.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, follow-through on isolation for the FULL time period, not only until you feel better.

 Many people have no symptoms of COVID-19, which makes it easy to spread the virus to others unintentionally. This makes it important to practice social distancing and to wear masks when it is difficult to be socially distanced or you are with people outside of your household unit. This includes young people, too.

 SHDHD encourages RESIDENTS of all communities, to practice social distancing and to wear masks if they are in locations where it is difficult to be socially distanced, such as any retail or other public and private enclosed spaces.

The health department encourages BUSINESSES in all communities to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 by requiring their employees to wear masks, and by putting measures in place to encourage space between customers, as well as between employees and customers.

EMPLOYERS across the health district should encourage employees to stay home from work (isolate at home) if they have any symptoms consistent with COVID-19. For more information and recommendations for social distancing, cleaning/disinfecting and other prevention in businesses, please visit https://southheartlandhealth.org/public-health-data/business-coronavirus-prepardness-materials.html.

 South Heartland District case counts by county are updated daily on SHDHD’s COVID webpage: https://southheartlandhealth.org/public-health-data/corona-virus.html. The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) provides daily updates to Nebraska's coronavirus COVID-19 cases on their Data Dashboard at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/Coronavirus.

 

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