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New Panhandle COVID Cases Jump 321 in 3 Days

New Panhandle COVID Cases Jump 321 in 3 Days

Health officials are urging all Panhandle residents to take extra caution with Halloween events over the weekend, as confirmation of new cases surged over the past few days.

Unified Command confirmed 321 more cases of COVID in the Panhandle since last Monday, Oct. 26, and 129 recoveries, putting active cases at 879, including 52 hospitalizations.

When asked if the regional risk dial would rise into the red, or extreme spread category, Panhandle Public Health District Director Kim Engel said she wasn’t sure, but the rapid rise in the figures represented a significant increase, “Not only in just the number of cases, but in the number of hospitalizations. I would say if it hasn’t seemed real before, it’s real now. I think for a lot of us we’ve known it’s been real for a long time.”

Officials advised everyone follow the 3-Cs of critical safety precautions:

  1. Crowded Places: Avoid gathering in groups where you can’t maintain 6-feet distance from others.
  2. Close Contact: Wear a mask or maintain 6-feet distance when you’re with people you don’t live with.
  3. Confined Spaces: Avoid enclosed spaces with poor ventilation.

Case information as of Oct. 29:

Children 19 & Under: 26
County Cases
Box Butte 4
Cheyenne 2
Garden 7
Morrill 1
Scotts Bluff 12
Adults: 295
County Cases
Box Butte 20
Cheyenne 21
Dawes 14
Deuel 3
Garden 7
Kimball 11
Morrill 15
Scotts Bluff 194
Sheridan 9
Unknown 1
Exposure Type
Community 26%
Close Contact 29%
Travel 0%
Under Investigation 45%

Unified Command confirms 129 more recoveries in the Panhandle.

Recovered: 129
County Cases
Box Butte 35
Cheyenne 12
Dawes 12
Deuel 2
Garden 2
Morrill 5
Scotts Bluff 48
Sheridan 13

 

Testing information and access for the Panhandle area:

  • You can sign up for the following free testing at Testnebraska.com or 402-207-9377:
    • Box Butte General Hospital in Alliance: Monday-Friday, 9-10am
      • Ambulance Bay on the east side of the emergency department, watch for the green arrows
      • Starting, Monday, November 2 location will be: 212 East 24th Street, former Kiddie Kampus pre-school building.
    • Chadron Community Hospital: Mondays & Fridays, 7-9am
      • 821 Morehead Street (Old Hospital ER Entrance next to Wilson Park)
      • Other testing opportunities for symptomatic patients may be available through the hospital as ordered by your Primary Care Practitioner, call the hospital at 747-2466 with questions.
    • Gordon Memorial Hospital: Tuesdays & Thursdays, 2-4pm
    • Regional West Health Services in Scottsbluff: Mondays & Fridays, Noon-4pm; Wednesdays, 2-6pm
    • Sidney Regional Medical Center: Tuesdays & Thursday, 7-9am
  • Community Action Health Center in Gering: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, & Thursdays, 7-8am
  • Alliance Community Pharmacy in Alliance: Monday-Friday, 7:30am-6pm; Saturday-Sunday, 9am-5pm
    • For people experiencing symptoms, same day results. Call 308-629-1045 for appointment, fee is $105.
  • Morrill County Community Hospital in Bridgeport: Daily
    • Call 308-262-1616 for testing, same day results, insurance can be billed.
  • Contact your local hospital or clinic for information on testing access.

March 2-October 29, 2020

  • Total Tests Conducted: 19,279
  • Positive: 2,260
  • Cumulative Positivity Rate: 11.7%
  • Recovered: 1,365
  • Active Cases: 879
  • Deaths: 16
  • Active Hospitalizations: 52
  • Total Cumulative Hospitalizations: 147
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