Central District Health Department Sees Record High New COVID-19 Cases

Nov. 19, 2020, 2:42 p.m. ·


The Central District Health Department is seeing record high new cases of COVID-19.

The district, which includes Grand Island, had 849 cases per 100,000 people last week. That’s significantly higher than the previous peak in late April, when the area had some of the highest transmission rates in the country.

Health Director Teresa Anderson said local hospitals are experiencing the capacity problems that the University of Nebraska Medical Center’s predicted.

"Today in all of our districts hospitals, we have 55% of the patients in the hospital are diagnosed with COVID," she said.

Anderson said residents who are celebrating Thanksgiving should ask their guests to wear masks. Grand Island City Council is expected to consider a mask mandate next week and Mayor Roger Steele is asking citizens to support a mask policy.

"The city needs a mask policy to protect its citizens and also to protect the city's ability to provide its lifesaving services," he said.

Anderson and Steele urge Grand Islanders to stay at home and practice social distancing so hospitals won’t continue to be overwhelmed by COVID-19 patients.