Positivity falls in Nebraska, Omaha-metro health districts
Positivity falls in Nebraska, Omaha-metro health districts

Positivity falls in Nebraska, Omaha-metro health districts

(WOWT) – Below are today’s updates from data reports on new cases and other COVID-19 stats reported by health officials across Nebraska and western Iowa.

Keep scrolling to find a vaccination clinic near you.

Nebraska data snapshot

According to Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services data updated Wednesday, the state updated the following numbers of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and vaccinations as of Tuesday:

DEATHS: DHHS reported 56 COVID-19 deaths in the past week, bringing the state’s COVID-19 death toll to 3,239 people.

CASES: Testing numbers across the state have continued to decline in recent weeks, with about two-thirds as man tests were conducted this past week compared to the week prior. Positive tests among those 37,163 tests nudged Nebraska’s positivity rate down from 10.5% to 10.2% as of Saturday. About a month ago, it was 27%.

Of the new cases reported in the past two weeks, 234 were verified as variants, bringing the total number of the state’s verified variant cases to 13,787: All but 20 cases were omicron variants; the rest were delta variant cases.

HOSPITALIZATIONS: The state’s health department also reported 34 fewer COVID-19 hospitalizations as of Tuesday compared to last week, bringing this week’s total to 356 COVID-19 patients.

According to the Nebraska Hospital Capacity & Respiratory Illness dashboard, as of Tuesday, hospitals across the state were caring for 292 adult COVID-19 patients, down from 458 reported about a week ago. There were 55 adult COVID-19 patients in ICUs, down from 110 patients reported about a week ago. The state dashboard also reported three pediatric COVID-19 patients, down from 22 about a week ago; six of them are in ICUs.

HOSPITAL CAPACITY: Overall statewide hospital capacity, which is based on staffing levels, decreased some in the last week. As of Tuesday, 76% of 3,245 adult beds were occupied, compared with 75% of 3,243 adult beds full a week ago. Pediatric wards had 83% of 371 beds full, compared with 81% of 363 pediatric beds occupied the week prior.

Adult ICU capacity was also improved and unchanged for pediatrics in the past week: As of Tuesday, 74% of 489 adult beds were filled, compared with 81% of 490 adult beds occupied a week ago; and 78% of 153 pediatric ICU beds were full, the same as reported last week.

VACCINATIONS: The state’s vaccination rate for the 1.77 million residents ages 5 and older increased about a half of a percent to 66.7% in the past two weeks. The state administered 20,301 doses in the last two weeks.

VACCINATION BREAKTHROUGHS: DHHS updated its breakthrough data roughly every 4-5 weeks; there was no update to report this week.

INFLUENZA & RSV: The state also updated its flu and RSV data this past week. Flu positivity increased in the state from 8.2% on Feb. 12 to 10.4% as of Saturday. A year ago, it was 0.2%. RSV positivity went down and remains low, decreasing from 1.2% on Feb. 12 to 1% as of Saturday. At this time last year, it was at 0.3%.

Sarpy/Cass data snapshot

The following information is from data posted Wednesday on the Sarpy/Cass Health Department COVID-19 dashboard and website.

DEATHS: The Sarpy/Cass Health Department has reported 12 COVID-19 deaths in the past two weeks, bringing the health district’s death toll to 285 people as of Wednesday.

Of those who have died, 115 were ages 80 and older, 67 were in their 70s, 57 were in their 60s, 24 were in their 50s, 12 were in their 40s, six were in their 30s, and four were in their 20s.

The dashboard does not provide any information about pre-existing conditions.

CASES: The health department reports that there are currently 529 active cases of COVID-19 in Sarpy County, down from 1,776 active cases two weeks ago; and 67 in Cass County, down from 196 active cases reported two weeks prior.

Conversely, the health department added 800 cases in the past two weeks to the total reported for Sarpy County to date, which now stands at 48,929; 101 cases were added to Cass County’s total in that same timespan, totaling 5,969 cases reported there since the beginning of the pandemic.

Of those active cases, most are in their 30s: 125 cases. There are 106 active cases among youth ages 14 and younger, with 42 cases among children ages 4 and younger, the only age group not yet able to get a COVID-19 vaccination.

POSITIVITY RATE: The health department reported a test positivity rate of 11.1% as of Saturday, down from 15.6% reported the week prior. The county ran 264 tests in the past week, less than half the amount collected the week prior.

HOSPITALIZATIONS: The Sarpy/Cass Health Department’s hospital data is provided by Douglas County, according to its dashboard. Today’s update on those numbers can be found in the Douglas County Health Department update below.

VACCINATIONS: The county was reporting a 64.7% vaccination rate among Sarpy County residents and 60.6% for Cass County as of Wednesday.

Pottawattamie County data snapshot

The following information is from data posted Wednesday on the Iowa Department of Public Health website, which no longer includes hospitalization and hospital capacity data.

DEATHS: IDPH reported 11 COVID-19 deaths in Pottawattamie County in the past week, bringing the death toll to 301 people. The website also indicates 137 Iowans have died in the past week; the state’s pandemic death toll is now 9,085 people.

The state is also no longer breaking down whether those people had pre-existing conditions.

CASES: IDPH confirmed 126 cases of COVID-19 in Pottawattamie County in the last seven days, down from 214 cases reported a week ago.

The website also shows that the average per 100,000 people is 125.5 cases as of Tuesday, down from 229.6 cases a week ago.

VACCINATIONS: The county was reporting a 54.9% vaccination rate among those ages 5 and older, according to IDPH data, compared to a 61.5% vaccination rate for the same age group in all of Iowa. That amounts to 51.5% of the county’s total population, compared to the 57.7% vaccination rate for the state.

Iowa COVID-19 deaths surpass 9,000 as hospitalizations drop

(AP) – The number of coronavirus-related deaths in Iowa climbed past 9,000, even as hospitalizations continue to decrease in the state.

The state on Wednesday reported a total of 9,085 deaths from the virus, including 137 since the latest report Feb. 16. Officials do not indicate when the deaths occurred.

Since Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds ordered the discontinuation of the state’s COVID-19 dashboard earlier in February, the health department has reported significantly less data on its website.

Iowa’s overall death rate, at 283 deaths per 100,000 people, ranks 30th in the nation. Federal data shows 345 people are hospitalized in Iowa with COVID-19, the lowest level in about six months.

Douglas County update

DEATHS: The Douglas County Health Department on Wednesday reported three COVID-19 deaths: three women in their 70s who were not vaccinated and a woman older than 80 who was vaccinated have died.

The local pandemic death toll is now 1,060 people.

CASES: DCHD also reported that 107 new COVID-19 cases had been confirmed in the past day, bringing the local pandemic total to 141,560 cases. The most recent case totals kept the local seven-day average at 85 cases — the lowest it’s been since July 30.

The Douglas County COVID-19 dashboard also showed that the local positivity rate as of Saturday had decreased from 13.3% to 9.7% in the past week.

HOSPITALIZATIONS: As of late Tuesday, area hospitals were still caring for 260 COVID-19 patients. Of those patients, 11 were in pediatrics, 32 were in ICUs, and 13 were on ventilators. There were also two adult patients awaiting COVID-19 test results.

HOSPITAL CAPACITY: Area hospital capacity fluctuates according to staffing levels. As of late Tuesday, hospitals were 90% full with 147 beds available, down from 219 available a day earlier. Area ICUs were 83% full with 51 beds available, two fewer than reported a day prior; with pediatric ICUs 89% full with 15 beds available, three more than reported a day earlier.

VACCINATIONS: To date, 66.3% of all Douglas County residents are vaccinated. The most recent group authorized for vaccination, youth ages 5-11, is 32% vaccinated; 66% of county youth ages 12-17 are fully vaccinated.

Lincoln-Lancaster County lowers risk dial

The Lincoln-Lancaster County health director on Wednesday repositioned the COVID-19 risk dial there to “low orange” — a level it hasn’t seen since November.

The indicator moves based on multiple local indicators and data from the previous three weeks: cases, hospitalizations, and positivity rate.

LLCHD has reported declining case numbers in the last several weeks, reporting nearly 5,000 cases for the week ending Jan. 15 and 432 last week. The weekly average of hospitalizations also declined in recent weeks; it was 141 on Feb. 1, and the health department reported 60 on Wednesday.

The positivity rate also fell from 30.7% for the week ending to Jan. 22 to 8.1% last week.

The health director also announced Wednesday that LLCHD had received its allotment of COVID-19 test kits to distribute to the public for free.

Vaccination clinics

Nebraska DHHS

Federal Retail Pharmacy Program: Pharmacies in and near the Omaha-metro area currently participating in the program include:

  • Medicine Man Pharmacy, 15615 Pacific St. Suite 8, Omaha NE 668118
  • ViaRx, 825 N. 90th St., Omaha NE 68114
  • Walmart, 3010 E. 23rd St., Fremont NE 68025

Retail pharmacy vaccine sign-ups: Baker’s | CVS | Hy-Vee | Kohll’s | Kubat | Sam’s Club | Walmart

Douglas County

Below is a list of the Douglas County COVID-19 vaccination clinics scheduled for this week, including child vaccination clinics at area schools. All clinics are open to the public for any approved shot in the vaccination series as indicated below. Those planning to get a booster shot should bring their vaccination card.

WEDNESDAY
  • 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Clair Memorial United Methodist Church, located at 5544 Ames Ave. – Pfizer for ages 5+ & Moderna
THURSDAY
  • 3-6 p.m. at Simple Foundation, located at 3003 Q St. – Pfizer for ages 5+
  • 5-7 p.m. at Omaha South High Magnet School, located at 4519 S. 41st St. – Pfizer for ages 5+
FRIDAY
  • 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Douglas County Health Department, located at 1111 S. 41st. St. – All vaccines available
SATURDAY
  • 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at New Beginning Community Baptist Church, located at 2301 N. 45th St. – Pfizer for ages 5+ & Moderna
  • 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at Nelson Mandela Elementary School, located at 6316 N. 30th St. – Pfizer for ages 5+ & Moderna

About Text Nebraska

The Douglas County Health Department is encouraging residents who test positive for COVID-19 to cooperate with Text Nebraska in order to help prevent further spread of the virus.

If you are age 19 or older, have recently tested positive for COVID-19, and provided a cell number when registering for your test, you will likely receive a text message from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services phone number 1-844-774-7604 that prompts you to take a survey. Adding that number to your phone’s directory will assure that your phone or provider doesn’t mark it as a spam call.

“It is not spam and is safe to respond,” DCHD said in a Thursday news release, noting that the survey is completely digital and doesn’t require you to speak with anyone.

“Text Nebraska is the next step in contact tracing, and this is where you can help,” Health Director Dr. Lindsay Huse said in the release. “Your response is needed as the number of cases makes it impossible for our staff to keep up with the demand.”

Did you take an at-home test?

In-home appointments

DCHD is helping those homebound to get vaccinated, scheduling in-home appointments for all three adult vaccination varieties, for any shot in the series.

To arrange this, call the DCHD information helpline at 402-444-3400.

OneWorld child vaccination clinics

OneWorld offers COVID-19 vaccinations at the following clinics:

OneWorld also offers children’s COVID-19 vaccinations at school health centers:

Walk-ins are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis; or you can call 402-734-4110 to make an appointment.

Children’s Hospital

Children’s Hospital is planning to offer dedicated COVID-19 vaccination clinics for about a month, starting by Thursday, Nov. 11 — or sooner, if they are supplied the doses before that.

  • 5-7 p.m. Thursdays at West Village Pointe and Spring Valley offices
  • 8 a.m.-noon Saturdays at West Village Pointe and Spring Valley offices

After Saturday, Dec. 11, pediatric COVID-19 vaccinations will be available by appointment at any Children’s Hospital location.

  • Tuesday and Thursday appointments available at the Mission Village location, 16909 Q St. Call 402-955-7575 or 402-955-SHOT (7468) for available times.
  • Thursday and Friday appointments available at the Dundee location, 4825 Dodge St. Call 402-955-7676 or 402-955-SHOT (7468) for available times.

Nebraska Medicine

Nebraska Medicine is offering COVID-19 vaccinations at clinics in several retail pharmacies and health centers around the Omaha-metro.

NebMed will provide Pfizer vaccinations by appointment at:

For those looking for walk-in appointments, single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccinations will be available at these pharmacies:

  • Outpatient Pharmacy at Bellevue Health Center, located at 25th Street and Highway 370, will offer J&J vaccinations from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday; and from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays.
  • Outpatient Pharmacy at Durham Outpatient Center, located at 45th and Emile streets, will offer J&J vaccinations from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. weekdays; and from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the weekends.

Around Omaha

SOUTH OMAHA: Testing and vaccinations are available at OneWorld, located at 4920 S. 30th St. Call 402-734-4110 to make an appointment for vaccinating anyone age 12 and older.

CHARLES DREW HEALTH CENTER: Call 402-451-3553 to schedule an appointment.

CHURCH CLINIC: Metropolitan Community Chuch of Omaha will host a walk-in COVID-19 vaccination clinic from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. No ID is required, but a parent or guardian must be present at the clinic with teens ages 12-18.

MCC FORT OMAHA: Vaccinations also will be distributed Mondays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Metropolitan Community College’s Fort Omaha campus, located at 5300 N. 30th St. Appointments will be made through the county’s vaccination registry.

TOTAL WELLNESS: DCHD has been working with Total Wellness, located at 9320 H Court, to establish a vaccination clinic from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays.

VETERANS: Any eligible veterans can obtain COVID-19 vaccinations or boosters at the Omaha VA Medical Center’s COVID-19 vaccination clinics’ walk-in hours from 8 a.m.-2:45 p.m. weekdays. Appointments can also be scheduled online.

Sarpy/Cass health district

The Sarpy/Cass Health Department has scheduled vaccination clinics for all COVID-19 vaccine doses, including pediatric doses, at its offices, located at 701 Olson Drive in Papillion:

  • Tuesdays: 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Wednesdays: 1-6 p.m.

The health department offers the first and second doses of Pfizer and Modern vaccines, Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) single doses, and booster doses of all three vaccines.

To make an appointment, call 833-998-2275 or 531-249-1873.

Pottawattamie County

The Pottawattamie County Public Health Department urges residents to take advantage of free drive-through COVID-19 testing at:

  • Hy-Vee Pharmacy on West Broadway
  • Nomi Health at 1751 Madison Ave.
  • Any Walgreens pharmacy location

Free take-home test kits are available at:

  • All Care Health Center, located at 902 S. Sixth St., in Council Bluffs
  • Pottawattamie County Public Health Department office, located at 600 S. Fourth St., Suite 100, in Council Bluffs

Walk-ins can receive COVID-19 vaccinations at the health department office at:

  • 4-6 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays
  • 8 a.m.-noon Saturdays

Vaccinations are also available from 8 a.m. to noon at the Veterans Affairs Building, located at 623 Sixth Ave. in Council Bluffs.

Three Rivers health district

Three Rivers Public Health Department is giving out boosters to those in certain risk categories who have had Pfizer vaccinations. It is also working with area businesses and schools to provide plan more COVID-19 vaccination clinics.

Three regular pediatric vaccination clinics have been set up for children ages 5-11:

  • Wahoo: 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. on the first and third Mondays of the month at 1320 E. 31st St.
  • Fremont: 3-6:30 p.m. Tuesdays and noon-3:30 p.m. Fridays at 2400 N. Lincoln Ave.

The health department has the necessary forms posted on their website, for minors and adults, for those who would like to fill them out ahead of their visit.

3RPHD’s regular clinics will continue:

  • In Dodge County, the Three Rivers clinic at 2400 N. Lincoln Ave. in Fremont, is open for walk-ins from 3 to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday; and noon to 3:30 p.m. Friday.
  • In Saunders County, the Three Rivers clinic in Lake Wanahoo, located at 1320 E. 31st St., is open to walk-ins from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on the first and third Mondays of the month.

Those who are home-bound or require special accommodations but need a COVID-19 test or vaccine can contact the health district at 402-704-2245 to make arrangements.

Off-line help

METHODIST HEALTH INFORMATION: The vaccine is available at most Methodist Physicians Clinic locations. Appointments for the vaccine are recommended and can be made by calling 402-354-CARE.

NEBRASKA VACCINE HOTLINE: Nebraskans can call 531-249-1873 or toll-free at 833-998-2275 for more information on the state’s COVID-19 vaccination process and to get assistance with signing up for a vaccination appointment.

DOUGLAS COUNTY HELPLINE: Local COVID-19 information, in Spanish and English, is available from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays, except for holidays. Call 402-444-3400 for assistance.

IOWA VACCINE HOTLINE: Iowans who need help to find a vaccine appointment can call 211 for assistance or 1-800-244-7431. Older or home-bound Iowans can contact Connections Area Agency on Aging at 712-328-2540 or 1-800-432-9209. For multilingual assistance, call 1-877-558-2609.

NATIONAL HOTLINE: To check vaccine availability in your community, call the national COVID-19 hotline at 1-800-232-0233.

Resource links

Where to get a test: Douglas County

Vaccine sign-up: Douglas County | Sarpy/Cass | Three Rivers | Nebraska

Vaccinations at hospitals: Nebraska Medicine | Methodist Health System | Children’s Hospital

Retail pharmacy vaccine sign-ups: Hy-Vee | Walmart | Sam’s Club | Baker’s | Kohll’s | CVS | Kubat

Vaccine information: Douglas County | Douglas County clinics | Nebraska || Iowa | Pottawattamie County | Mills County | Fremont County

COVID-19 dashboards: Douglas County | Sarpy County | Three Rivers Health District | Lancaster County | Bryan Health | Nebraska | Iowa | Worldwide

School info: Omaha Public Schools | Millard Public Schools | Bellevue Public Schools | Westside Community Schools | Papillion-La Vista Community Schools | Gretna Public Schools | Elkhorn Public Schools | Council Bluffs Community Schools | Lincoln Public Schools | UNL | UNO | Midland University

COVID-19 risk dials: Lincoln-Lancaster County

WOWT.com quick search: COVID-19 | Coronavirus | Vaccine

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