The eleven counties of the Panhandle will stay in the Phase 3 Directed Health Measures restrictions through the end of August, along with 55 other counties in Nebraska.
According to information on the Department of Health and Human Services website, the new DHM continuing current restrictions takes effect Saturday and will remain until Aug. 31, unless further amended before that date.
The information was updated as 27 counties in three public health districts have been approved to move to phase 4, in which most restrictions become guidance without the threat of misdemeanor citation for non-compliance.
The districts transitioned to the least restricted reopening phase are Loup Basin Health Department (Blaine, Custer, Garfield, Greeley, Howard, Loup, Sherman, Valley, and Wheeler counties) and on Aug. 1, North Central District Health Department (Antelope, Boyd, Brown, Cherry, Holt, Keya Paha, Knox, Pierce and Rock counties) and Southwest Nebraska Public Health Department (Chase, Dundy, Frontier, Furnas, Hayes, Hitchcock, Keith, Perkins and Red Willow counties).
In phase 4, the primary restrictions are on gatherings (indoors limited to 75% of rated occupancy, and 100% of rated occupancy for outdoor venues), continued social distancing between groups and plans for reopening or expanding to new capacity limits must be submitted to the local health departments and approved for all indoor and outdoor venues that hold 500 or more individuals (1,000 or more in counties over 500,000 population).