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News and resources regarding COVID-19

PM News 3.9.20: COVID-19 Latest in Nebraska/Iowa and Local School District Impact

Siouxland Public Media
Gov. Pete Ricketts/Twitter

Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts is warning that Nebraska could be dealing with the coronavirus outbreak for the next nine to 12 months.

He’s urging the public to take precautionary steps to keep it from spreading.

Ricketts says the number of known cases in Nebraska has risen to three, but there aren't yet indications that it's spreading.  There are also three cases in Iowa.

The Plattsmouth school district in eastern Nebraska has joined schools in Fremont and Hooper in canceling classes this week as a precaution against the spread Covid-19.

An Omaha woman with the state’s first confirmed case of COVID-19 participated in a Special Olympics basketball tournament in Fremont on Feb. 29.  She’s in critical condition today.  Two members of her family have since tested positive for the disease. Plattsmouth Community Schools said one of its students attended the tournament.

A dozen staff members and athletes from the South Sioux City School District attended the same tournament and are undergoing a self-quarantine until Saturday.  The Superintendent says the group is at very low risk of exposure by the virus.

Here’s information provided by Sioux City Community Schools surrounding the coronavirus:

SCCSD is in regular contact with the Siouxland District Health Department and the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), and follow guidelines and best practices from those entities and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) when it comes to responding to public health concerns, including Coronavirus and the flu.

In recent weeks, SCCSD has reviewed and updated our Pandemic Response Plan. We have also reviewed our cleaning and disinfecting guidelines for schools, to help prevent the spread of viruses, and have increased our inventory of cleaning and safety supplies should they become necessary.

SCCSD will continue to monitor the situation with county and state health officials. Should Iowa’s status change, the district will turn to IDPH and the CDC and follow any updated guidelines.


There is something you can do. Review good hygiene with your family to help keep them safe. Examples of some routine, everyday preventive actions to lessen the spread of viruses include:

§  Cover your mouth with your upper arm or a tissue when coughing or sneezing

§  Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.

§  Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

§  Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

§  Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Follow Sick Day Guidelines:

Keep others well by keeping your child home when sick.

§  For your child’s health, stay home if:

·       A fever of 100.0 degrees or higher

·       Vomiting or diarrhea

§  Symptoms that may keep your child from participating in school:

·       Cough that he or she cannot control

·       Headache, body aches, or earache

·       Sore Throat (A little sore throat may be ok for school, but a bad sore throat is not.)

§  Remember the 24 hour rule :

·       Fever: Keep your child home until fever has been gone with no medicine for 24 hours.

·       Vomiting or diarrhea: Keep your child home for 24 hours after the last time he or she vomited or had diarrhea.

·       Antibiotics: Keep your child home for 24 hours after the FIRST dose of antibiotic.

Sheila Brummer returns to her radio roots as a Reporter/Special Projects Producer for Siouxland Public Media KWIT-KOJI.