UPDATED 10:26 p.m. March 29
Four Corners Health Department and the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services have mandated Directed Health Measures in Seward County, effective 6 a.m. Saturday, March 28, through at least Wednesday, May 6, with the goal of limiting community spread of COVID-19.
Four Corners released a statement at 8:42 p.m. March 27, which now prohibits gatherings of 10 or more people, more heavily limits restaurant offerings and makes violations enforceable by law.
"Today (March 27) a case of community transmitted COVID-19 was reported in the Central District Health Department region (Hall, Hamilton, Merrick Counties) to our west. To our east, Lancaster County has also had community spread and Directed Health Measures were ordered earlier this week," said the statement, which was signed by Four Corners Health Department Director Laura McDougall.
People in the Four Corners Health District are being tested for the COVID-19 virus, but as of 10 a.m. March 29, no cases had been confirmed in Seward County or any other counties in the district, which also includes Butler, Polk and York counties.
Two people have died in Nebraska, according to DHHS, as of March 29. One was a man in his 50s from Douglas County, and the other was a woman in her 60s from Hall County. Both had underlying health conditions.
“We send our condolences to both families,” said Dr. Gary Anthone, Chief Medical Officer and Director of Public Health for DHHS. “Unfortunately, from the beginning, we knew there would be deaths from COVID-19 in Nebraska and this underscores the potential seriousness of the disease and the importance of the measures we’re taking as individuals and as a state to help slow the spread of the virus.”
“Susanne and I send our condolences to the families who lost their loved ones today,” said Gov. Pete Ricketts. “I encourage all Nebraskans to keep these families and all families impacted by coronavirus in their thoughts and prayers. This is a reminder for all of us to practice the ten-person rule, exercise good hygiene, and to stay home if you’re displaying flu-like symptoms.”