LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) — Nebraska public health officials are watching for signs of strain on Omaha’s hospitals following a steady increase in coronavirus patients, but the state’s chief medical officer says he isn’t yet worried about the caseload as Gov. Pete Ricketts moves to further ease restrictions.
Nebraska Chief Medical Officer Dr. Gary Anthone says that, based on his conversations with Omaha-area hospital officials, he doesn’t believe the hospitals are at risk of being overrun with coronavirus patients.
His comments came after a University of Nebraska Medical Center infectious diseases expert said she’s concerned about the number of hospitalizations in the Omaha area, even though hospitals statewide still have plenty of capacity.
3 News Now Reporter Jennifer Griswold provided live updates via Twitter:
Dr. Matthew Blomstedt says under new Directed Health Measure (announced yesterday but going into effect 6/1) he believes graduations this summer will be able to take place.— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
Rules for gatherings: 25 people or 25% of occupancy of venue, not to exceed 3,000 people.
If you would like to observe Memorial Day on Monday, please keep this web address handy. This is the state's virtual ceremony. A Gold Star family will be taking part. https://t.co/CvRlCOm0AM— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
Nebraska Directed Health Measure suggested people can take off masks to get a facial. But you cannot take them off for a beard trimming. It's only for services from an esthetician. pic.twitter.com/9IJlaXUC75— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
While dancing is not allowed (cue more Footloose references), dance recitals are allowed. It's about social distancing. Gov. says that doesn't happen during dancing at weddings.— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
Side note: a wedding sounds fun right about now. But a 2019 wedding.
Cheerleading is considered a contact sport on list from American Academy of Pediatrics therefore prohibited in new Directed Health Measure.— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
A couple questions on whether it can be allowed if stunts are avoided, Gov. says they'll look into it more.
Dr. Anthone says it's his team's job to make sure there are beds and vents available. He was asked about concerns regarding more loosened restrictions.— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
I did not hear exact question to which he answered, "I cannot predict the future, but I'm not worried about it right now."
Governor is asked why he still supports TestNebraska.— Jennifer Griswold (@griswoldkmtv) May 22, 2020
He says it is adding onto testing in Nebraska, Gov. says that's a good thing.
He says still continue to meet benchmarks
You can watch the briefing below: