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Two Rivers moves COVID risk dial into orange

Risk dial for COVID-19 in Two Rivers Public Health District on December 30, 2021.
Risk dial for COVID-19 in Two Rivers Public Health District on December 30, 2021.(Two Rivers Public Health Department)
Published: Dec. 31, 2021 at 9:37 AM CST
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KEARNEY, Neb. (KSNB) - The Two Rivers Public Health Department has updated its COVID-19 risk dial, moving it down from the red “severe” risk level. It is now in the orange “elevated” level as of December 30, 2021.

The health department said they recorded 186 cases of the virus between December 22- December 28. A little over 10% of all tests recorded in the district are positive. Between December 12-25, omicron made up 3% of COVID specimens sequenced in the state of Nebraska.

COVID test positivity rate is high in Dawson and Gosper County (15% and 52% respectively), however, overall tests conducted has dropped dramatically across the district. About 30% less tests were conducted in the past week as compared to three months previously in September, although test positivity rate is roughly equal.

As of Wednesday morning, there were 10 available ICU beds in TRPHD. Med/Surg bed availability is less than 30% across the district currently. 9 patients are on ventilator support, 8 of them suffering from COVID-19.

A public COVID testing site is available in Kearney city at the Buffalo County Fairgrounds. Testing results are available the same day and are offered Mondays & Wednesdays 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

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As of Dec 29, 2021, half of the total population of TRPHD has received the minimum recommended dose of COVID vaccine (1 or 2 as indicated). TRPHD strongly urges all unvaccinated vaccine-eligible residents to get vaccinated through their healthcare provider, pharmacy or TRPHD.

For these reasons, the risk dial is lowered from last week and is now in the ‘elevated’ (orange) zone. The dial reading reflects lower test positivity rates across TRPHD, improved ICU and hospital bed availability across the district.

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