07-Apr-2020 / Central District Health Department
(CDHD Release) - Central District Health Department (CDHD) is saddened to report the second COVID-19 related death in Hall County. The death was a woman in her 60’s who was hospitalized.
We were also notified that the limited testing from the National Guard for health care workers is being further limited due to issues of testing supplies. We are making adjustments accordingly in order to facilitate testing 150 health care workers today and tomorrow.
07-Apr-2020 / Grand Island Police Department
In an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 cases in
Grand Island, the Grand Island Police Department will continue to enforce the city park and
GIPS school playgrounds closures with citations. The closure of city parks does not include city
sidewalks and the hike and bike trail system and lake walkways (Pier Park Lake, Suck’s Lake,
and Eagle Scout Lake walkways), however users of those walkways must be using them for
their intended purpose and are encouraged to maintain social distancing.
Additionally, the Grand Island Police Department will proactively patrol and respond to
complaints of gatherings of more than 10 persons or smaller gatherings with invitees where
social distancing isn’t taking place, particularly during the upcoming holiday weekend. If these
gatherings include persons who are not permanent residents of that address, we will enforce the
Directed Health Measures with discretion accordingly.
This will be done in accordance with the Directed Health Measure, which reads as follows:
1) Gatherings and services as described are prohibited:
a. Any event or convening that brings together more than ten (10) persons, excluding staff, in a
single room or single space at the same time, including but not limited to, a school, daycare
facility (including in home facilities), gymnasiums, fitness center, auditorium, stadium,
arena, large event conference room, meeting hall, theater, library, or any other confined
indoor or confined outdoor space, and weddings, funerals, parades, fairs, festivals, and
b. Any indoor or outdoor event or convening having ten (10) or fewer persons where a
minimum distance of six (6) feet between all individuals cannot be maintained.
c. Customer services at tattoo parlors, massage parlors, barbershops, beauty/nail salons, and
similar personal services businesses.
2) Public Park access is restricted to hiking and biking trails and public sidewalks. Users of trails and
sidewalk are encouraged to maintain six (6) feet of separation between all persons. Additional
restrictions may be imposed by municipal or county authorities.
This is a time for all residents of Grand Island to work together, keep one another healthy, and
help save lives as the presence of COVID-19 in our community grows.
06-Apr-2020 / Central District Health Department
The number of lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Central District totals 68 as of 5 p.m. today. This includes 1 case in Merrick County, 5 in Hamilton County and 64 in Hall County.
Additionally, we have been notified that testing will be provided to at risk healthcare workers and first responders on a very limited basis this week. The National Guard will be in Grand Island tomorrow through Friday (5 days). Hours for testing are 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. each day. The goal is to test 75 healthcare workers and first responders each day for five days by appointment only. Nasopharyngeal specimens will be obtained and sent to the Nebraska Public Health Lab. The first priority is testing of long term care workers who have been exposed or are having symptoms. Then the schedule will be filled with other HCWs who have been exposed or are having symptoms. Health care workers providing direct care will be prioritized for testing.
The testing provides an opportunity to determine the spread of the virus in the healthcare community. This will in turn give us knowledge of the level of the virus in our community in general. The process is being coordinated through CDHD. For more information, call 308-385-5175.
06-Apr-2020 / Nebraska State Patrol
APRIL 6, 2020 (LINCOLN, NEB.) — In accordance with the State of Emergency declared by Governor Pete Ricketts and guidelines from federal and local health officials regarding social distancing, NSP will prioritize some specific fingerprinting services through Friday, May 22, 2020. Appointments will be available for all categories beginning Tuesday, May 26, 2020.
Between April 6 and May 22, fingerprinting appointments will be available for the following categories. Appointments must be made in advance and will include extra precautions.
· Those who are required to be fingerprinted under the Sex Offender Registration Act, including federal sex offender regulations
· Concealed Handgun Permit applicants
· Concealed Handgun Permit renewal applicants who are unable to renew online.
· Law Enforcement Officers
· Healthcare, Daycare, and other essential personnel not covered by an Executive Order
Nebraskans who fit any of those categories can call the NSP Criminal Identification Division office in Lincoln at 402-479-4971 to schedule appointments, regardless of your location in Nebraska. Renewals or changes to existing CHPs, such as updating a name or mailing address, can still be completed online at https://www.nebraska.gov/apps-nsp-chp/.
Pursuant to Executive Orders 20-08 and 20-10 regarding healthcare workers and daycare providers, work may begin prior to completion of an FBI fingerprint-based background check. Those who are covered by an Executive Order should schedule that required fingerprint-based background check for after May 26, 2020.
Other persons required to be fingerprinted for employment purposes, such as law enforcement, healthcare/daycare providers not covered by an Executive Order, or other essential personnel who are not subject to an Executive Order amending timeline requirements, should call 402-479-4971 for scheduling options.
The unavailability of fingerprinting appointments at NSP does not interfere with an employer’s ability to conduct the background checks that are still required during this time.
06-Apr-2020 / Nebraska State Patrol
APRIL 6, 2020 (KEARNEY, NEB.) — Troopers with the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP) have arrested a York man following a pursuit on Interstate 80 that began near Lexington and ended near Kearney.
At approximately 8:45 a.m. Sunday, NSP received a call from a motorist regarding a dangerous driver traveling eastbound on Interstate 80. A trooper was able to locate the vehicle, a Mercury Mystique, in Dawson County and observed it speeding at 102 miles per hour and passing another vehicle on the shoulder.
The trooper attempted a traffic stop near Lexington at mile marker 236, but the driver refused to stop. The trooper initiated a pursuit.
During the pursuit, the suspect threw a container of a white, powdery substance from the vehicle, which was retrieved by another trooper. The vehicle also intentionally struck multiple road signs as it fled from troopers.
At mile marker 263, near Odessa, troopers successfully deployed spike strips to slow the vehicle. As the vehicle reached the Kearney rest area on I-80, a trooper was able to perform a tactical vehicle intervention maneuver to bring the vehicle to a stop.
The driver, Cody Brouillette, 26, of York, was arrested for felony flight to avoid arrest, willful reckless driving, driving under the influence of drugs, driving under suspension, resisting arrest, possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia, tampering with evidence, criminal mischief, and numerous traffic violations. Brouillette was lodged in Buffalo County Jail.
06-Apr-2020 / Tyson Havranek
06-Apr-2020 / Tyson Havranek
A group of doctors has urged Gov. Pete Ricketts to impose stricter measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. Forty-five doctors from Grand Island on Saturday published an open letter warning "the incidence is going to increase dramatically ... if nothing further is done to mitigate the spread in our community.”
That letter led to a very productive conversation between the Governor's office and medical professionals from Grand Island. Taylor Gage the spokesperson for the Governor said the State will be doing five things as a follow up to the conversation:
1. Providing additional staff to conduct close contact investigations.
2. Communicating with employers to ensure compliance with quarantine directions in the State’s DHM.
3. Working with the city’s largest employers on plans for social distancing in the workplace.
4. Conducting additional testing in the community this week.
5. Communicating with the public in Grand Island to increase the community’s focus on social distancing.
06-Apr-2020 / City Of Grand Island
05-Apr-2020 / Central District Health Department
(CDHD Release) - Central District Health Department (CDHD) reports a total of 56 lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Central District as of 5 p.m., a significant increase from the prior day’s total. This does not include the number of cases being diagnosed by health care providers without COVID testing based on symptoms alone. The total also does not reflect cases of COVID-19 in individuals whose symptoms may be mild enough that they do not seek healthcare.
We received word from Governor Ricketts today that additional testing will be available in our district by the end of this week. We will also see reinforcements to our team in the form of additional epidemiology staff to assist with case contacts. When we have lab tests to help us identify who actually has COVID-19, we can investigate who those people had contact with and then ask everyone who was in direct contact (defined as closer than 6 feet for 10 minutes) to quarantine for 14 days. We are reaching out to persons who test positive and to their close contacts but are challenged to keep up with the ever-increasing numbers.
We are working with our healthcare providers to reduce the number of people who are ill at the same time in order to avoid overtaxing our healthcare system. Our best defense is to prevent the spread. That requires all of us taking this seriously.” Because we are all at risk now, we all need to do our part. Stay home! Stay home! Stay home!