Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and health officials said today the recent increase in local cases of COVID-19 and other trends may prompt further restrictions in the community. The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department (LLCHD) announced that 44 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Lincoln today, bringing the community total to 2,226. The number of deaths in the community remains at 13.
Scott Holmes, Manager of the Environmental Health Division of LLCHD said officials are concerned about the increase in new cases, the positivity rate and the number of hospitalizations.
The City is delivering letters to bars today to remind them of the local restrictions, and Holmes said those not following local laws face immediate closure. Mayor Gaylor Baird said the City would decide by Friday if further restrictions are needed.
"Unfortunately, the progress we have made through shared sacrifice is now being reversed," Mayor Gaylor Baird said. "We are in a very serious situation here. Our public health emergency is not over. I have instructed our health team to determine what measures are necessary to get us back on track because the setback we are seeing now threatens the opening of school. It threatens the businesses that have reopened. And it threatens the health of every person in our community."
On Friday, the COVID-19 Risk Dial was moved from the moderate level to "Orange," indicating a high risk of the virus spreading. Residents are advised to follow these recommendations to protect themselves and others:
Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, shortness of breath, repeated shaking with chills, repeated muscle pain, headache, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell.
If you have symptoms, please get tested. Begin the process with a free online risk assessment available at BryanHealth.com and CHIHealth.com. Testing is by appointment only. Bryan Health offers drive-through testing at LifePointe, 7501 S. 27th Street. CHI Health St. Elizabeth offers drive-through testing at North Star High School, 5801 N. 33rd Street.
Test Nebraska will be in Lincoln at North Star High School, 5801 N. 33rd St. from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m., Wednesday through Friday, July 15 through 17. Testing is now open to all Lancaster County residents. Testing is by appointment only. Begin the process with a free online risk assessment at TestNebraska.com.
LLCHD also released the following information today:
Recoveries: up from 756 to 785
Overall positivity rate:
For more information, visit COVID19.lincoln.ne.gov or call the Health Department hotline at 402-441-8006.