SHDHD emphasizes need for prevention in Sutton and Clay County

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The South Heartland District Health Department (SHDHD) previously reported community spread of COVID-19 in Clay County, which means that SHDHD’s investigations have been unable to determine the source of exposure for some cases.

Recent information shows spread in Sutton, and ​SHDHD is asking all residents to self-monitor for symptoms along with temperature checks twice daily. Self-monitoring helps you to identify early symptoms. Stay home (isolate at home) if you or a family member/household contact have any symptoms consistent with COVID-19. Contact your local provider or SHDHD for testing.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, follow-through on isolation for the FULL time period, not only until you feel better. Many people have no symptoms of COVID-19, which makes it easy to spread the virus to others unintentionally. This makes it important to practice social distancing and to wear masks when it is difficult to be socially distanced or you are with people outside of your household unit. This includes young people, too.

SHDHD encourages the following:

• RESIDENTS of all communities, to practice social distancing and to wear masks if they are in locations where it is difficult to be socially distanced, such as any retail or other public and private enclosed spaces. 

• BUSINESSES in all communities to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 by requiring their employees to wear masks, and by putting measures in place to encourage space between customers, as well as between employees and customers.

• EMPLOYERS across the health district should encourage employees to stay home from work (isolate at home) if they have any symptoms consistent with COVID-19. For more information and recommendations for social distancing, cleaning/disinfecting and other prevention in businesses, please visit https://southheartlandhealth.org/public-health-data/business-coronavirus....

Clay County Emergency Manager Tim Lewis shared that There is always the potential for an asymtomatic person or persons who have the virus and are spreading it around town.

“It could be that people think the symptoms they have are not COVID related so they are going out. Either way SHDHD has asked that we step up our local efforts to continue to educate our community, model the steps for staying healthy, and support our businesses who are working to take precautions,” Lewis said.

Lewis added, “we have an opportunity to get our community engaged in the solution with our continued leadership. We can do that in several ways.”

Testing is coming to Clay County Wednesday, May 27 in Clay Center

Lewis encourages people to register for the testnebraska.com for an upcoming Test Nebraska event coming to Clay County from 3-6 p.m., Wednesday, May 27, in Clay Center. The testing will take place at the Clay County Fairgrounds. “The other way we can help slow the spread of the virus in our Sutton Community is continue to encourage individuals, groups and business operations, to follow the six rules for keeping Nebraska healthy,” Lewis said.

The six rules to keep Nebraska healthy

1. Stay home. Do not take unnecessary trips outside the home. Respect the 10-person limit.

2. Socially distance your work. Work from home or use the six-foot rule as much as possible in the workplace.

3. Shop alone and only shop once a week. Do not take family with you.

4. Help kids follow social distancing. Play at home. No group sports and no playgrounds.

5. Help seniors stay at home by shopping for them. Do not visit long-term care facilities.

6. Exercise daily at home or with an appropriately socially-distanced activity.

Clay County Courthouse

Our courthouse is still secured and anyone coming into the courthouse from outside will need to wear a mask inside the building. That will include vendors, appointments, prisoners, defendants and attorneys while they are in the public areas of the courthouse.

Rolled Back DHM

Lewis goes on to say, “our rolled back DHM has people coming out and congregating again, which is important, but the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and SHDHD still recommend that with the cases spreading as they are that people wear masks when going out where they will come in contact with others.”

Other suggestions from SHDHD and the Clay County Emergency Management offices includes:

• Masks for dining guests are not necessary at the table, but the coming and goings is wise.

• A mask protects you and protects the person you are in contact with, or the next person you are in contact with.

•It is not a popular option, but necessary so that we can slow the spread of COVID-19.

• Many have taken the notion that COVID-19 it is not here, or it is not us position or attitude.

“There is much, what I am calling noise from acute stands, making two very clear sides or opinions with COVID-19 as the talking point,” he said, adding, “in the middle of all that is the reality of trying to protect our communities, our staff, and the vitality of our communities. As a case study I am watching what is happening right now in Elkhorn and that has been the nightmare for many of us on this email string.”

“I hope to avoid COVID-19 from growing in Sutton any more so that we can all sleep well at night. Please encourage staff, businesses, contacts, and people in your circle of influence to follow the six steps for staying healthy. Masks are not enjoyable. Haley and I have to set our jaw and just do it. Kristi Eggers and her practice have been out in front of COVID-19 for Sutton and our county. She has great insight and thoughts on how to keep the community safe,” finalized Lewis.

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