COVID-19 Daily Roundup: Omaha Takeaway Only Restaurants, Law Enforcement Check Callers For Symptoms: Nebraska Public Media
Health officials announced today that all Douglas County’s restaurants and bars will not be asked to switch take-out until after a second case of COVID-19 was found in the community in Omaha and hospitals in Omaha formed a virtually unified order to order Address the COVID-19 crisis in Nebraska.
Latest news and resources: netNebraska.org/coronavirus
Governor Ricketts announces further restrictions
Governor Pete Ricketts held a press conference today with representatives from the food and restaurant industries.
In Douglas County, a second case of the novel coronavirus was discovered in the community. This means that all bars and restaurants there are asked to close their dining rooms and only switch to take away or deliver.
The governor made it clear that the 10-person limit will be enforceable in Omaha due to a specific order, but will remain voluntary in the rest of the state. If they fail to comply, the government can take stronger action.
The day care centers are also limited to 10 children per room. A representative from the childcare industry noted at the press conference that daycare centers are increasing their cleaning routines.
Food and restaurant officials said there was no food shortage in Nebraska. Grocery stores are working to fill the supply chain for paper products. More groceries were bought than normal, creating some gaps in the supply chain, but the rep said things should go back to normal. Some grocery stores leave the first hour after they open to the elderly and people with pre-existing conditions, but the grocery store representative said people can also make this decision voluntarily.
Law enforcement agencies use personal protective equipment for COVID-19
The Lincoln Police Department has implemented additional cleaning procedures in its stations. They also ask people who call for help if they have symptoms of the coronavirus or have traveled to areas where the virus is spreading rapidly. If the caller is at higher risk of transmitting the virus, officers wear personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves, and goggles before answering the call.
The state patrol also wears personal protective equipment. They say it’s too early to tell if there’s a difference in the number of calls the patrol receives during social distancing. However, Nebraska State Patrol public relations director Cody Thomas said the streets of Nebraska may have been safer on St. Patrick’s Day this year. The patrol typically sees an average of 15-17 DUI arrests over the holidays, but there were only four on Tuesday.
“We know that so many restaurants and so many bars have at least changed their operations, if not closed. So if people followed the guidelines issued by local, state, and federal agencies for gatherings of 10 or less, we think it probably reduced the number of people with impaired driving skills last night, which is great news. “
Cancer patients at higher risk for COVID-19
People of all ages are advised to stay home as much as possible to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. However, people in need of regular medical care, including those with cancer, sometimes have to leave the home to receive such care.
Dr. Alison Friefeld, a professor of medicine specializing in cancer treatment at the Fred and Pamela Buffet Cancer Center, said cancer patients are at higher risk for COVID-19. This risk is even higher for those who have had a bone marrow transplant or who have malignant bleeding. Those who are currently being treated for cancer and who are over 70 years of age are also at increased risk. She encourages social distancing, especially since there is currently no vaccine against the coronavirus. Friefeld says the cancer center is committed to continuous care.
“Sometimes this happens on a tiered basis,” said Friefeld. “This means that for people whose cancer risk is low, their clinic appointments can be postponed and postponed if we believe that their personal appointment is not absolutely necessary, and these patients can also be interviewed telemedically.”
For those patients who need things like chemotherapy, surgery, and blood transfusions, doctors try to keep everything on schedule. Everyone who visits the center will be screened at the door for symptoms of COVID-19 as well as specific travel stories. Those who are at higher risk of transmitting the virus will be moved to a separate room and given a face mask during further examination.
Bacon hosts event with UNMC officials
Researchers at the University of Nebraska Medical Center are currently in clinical trials for a treatment for COVID-19. They are also working with Apple on an app that can be used to determine when a person needs to be tested for the virus.
Congressman Don Bacon met with UNMC leaders Wednesday and said the national testing backlog could improve soon
“To do this, we had to remove some bureaucratic hurdles,” said Bacon. “There is a culture that goes back decades when it comes to testing. We are trying to remove these barriers. But as soon as we can remove these barriers, the spirit of innovation and know-how will emerge. And we’re seeing innovative ways of doing these tests all over our country, and right here at UNMC it’s amazing to be able to develop a mobile testing application. “
Omaha hospitals work together
The Omaha Metropolitan Healthcare Coalition helps coordinate collaboration between 25 hospitals, 112 long-term care facilities and more than 700 clinics in the greater Omaha area. These hospitals have formed a virtual unified command to help deal with the coronavirus crisis. This command is used to free resources.
Justin Watson is a director of the coalition and he said he was concerned about the lack of protective equipment for healthcare workers. His organization has even shared some of its own supply with facilities that are running low.
“I think right now that you have an event that affects everyone – not just hospitals – long-term care facilities, assisted living, clinics, GPs, and everyone is feeling the crisis, and that’s the problem now,” said Watson.
Watson said the collaboration so far has been strong and the hospitals are working together.
Department of Education says student teachers can learn from school changes
Earlier this week, the Department of Education requested that all schools work to get online by the end of the week. This means that teacher trainees working on a license in Nebraska are unlikely to be in physical classrooms in the coming weeks.
David Jesperson is the Department of Education’s public information officer and has asked student teachers not to worry about the hourly requirements for their teaching operations. He said the department is flexible about other requirements for schools.
“Learning, education and teaching continue,” said Jesperson. “We therefore recommend that student teachers work with their districts to find out what is best for them, but they could definitely keep reporting and receiving valuable lessons about e-learning and alternative learning environments during this time.”
The department will assess the situation of students and teachers on a case-by-case basis, and the scenarios may vary from district to district across the state.
Latest news and resources: netNebraska.org/coronavirus