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Test Nebraska Sites for Coming Week; Directed Health Measures Relax Further on Monday; Two Community Cares Grants Open for Applications; Third Grant Goes Live on Monday
LINCOLN – The state case total, as of 5:45 p.m. Central Daylight Time today, is 19,660, marking an increase of 1,136 from last Friday. During the past seven days, the total number of COVID-19-related deaths in the state increased by 18 to 284, according to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) data dashboard.
Local health departments are reporting deaths and cases in their jurisdictions. In the event of a discrepancy between DHHS dashboard data and deaths or cases reported by local public health officials, data reported by the local health department should be considered the most up to date.
In addition, 14,200 Nebraskans, diagnosed with COVID-19, have since recovered.
Any Nebraska resident who needs a test should complete the online assessment at TestNebraska.com or Testnebraska/es for Spanish, and schedule a visit to their nearest testing site to receive a test. TestNebraska locations, dates and times for the week of July 6 are listed at TestNebraska.com and TestNebraska/es.
Directed Health Measures Relax Further on Monday
The state directed health measures (DHMs) for Dakota, Hall, Hamilton and Merrick counties will ease on Monday. These four counties are moving from Phase 2 to Phase 3 of reopening, which will put all of Nebraska's counties in Phase 3.
An outline of Phase 3 DHMs is available at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/COVID-19-Directed-Health-Measures.aspx.
The content of the Phase 4 DHMs was also recently announced. An effective date has not been set, however, Phase 4 is being provided so counties know what to expect as the state moves forward.
An outline of Phase 4 DHMs is available at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/COVID-19-Directed-Health-Measures.aspx along with a document that outlines all phases.
Updated guidelines associated with these next steps are also posted at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/COVID-19-Nebraska-Guidance-Documents.aspx.
Two Community Cares Grant Applications Open, Another Set to Open Monday
Applications for the Stabilization Grant for Charitable Organizations and Providers and the Response & Recovery Grant for Charitable Organizations and Providers opened on June 29 and July 1, respectively.
The Community CARES Stabilization Grant for Charitable Organizations and Providers offers organizations working capital of at least $12,000 to help them cover operating expenses related to COVID-19 impacts. This will enable charities and eligible providers to continue serving Nebraska's children, families and communities. A total of $40 million is allocated for this opportunity. Information on eligibility, allowed use of funds along with application materials can be found at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/COVID-19-Community-CARES-Stabilization-Grant.aspx
The Community CARES COVID-19 Response & Recovery Grant will provide resources to charitable organizations and eligible providers to help children, families and communities respond to and recover from impacts of the COVID-19. DHHS expects subawards in the $50,000 to $2,000,000 range. A total of $43 million is allocated for this opportunity. Additional information is available on the DHHS website at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/COVID-19-Community-CARES-Response-and-Recovery-Grant.aspx .
Finally, DHHS will begin accepting and processing grant applications for the Healthy Places Grant for Child Care Providers and Centers of Worship resources on Monday. Nebraska's child care providers and centers of worship must provide clean, safe facilities for the children and families they serve. In accordance with public health guidance, this includes ensuring access to personal protective equipment (PPE) and disinfecting supplies to limit the spread of COVID-19. These resources will help facilities continue operating safely, or enable others to reopen under public health guidelines.
Awards are explicitly to be used for COVID-19 PPE and cleaning supplies: $250 for child care homes, $500 for child care centers, $500 for places of worship. A total of $2 million is allocated for this opportunity. More information about the grant is available at http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/COVID-19-Community-CARES-Healthy-Places-Grant.aspx.
In total, the Community Cares initiative allocates $85 million to support community organizations such as food banks, shelters, and mental health care providers as they face increased demand for their services due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Potential applicants can visit dhhs.ne.gov/CommunityCares or call (833) 220-0018 for more information.
The Holiday Weekend and Deciding to Go Out
As communities and businesses are opening, Nebraskans may be looking for ways to resume some daily activities as safely as possible. While there is no way to ensure zero risk of infection, it is important to understand potential risks and how to adopt different types of prevention measures to protect yourself and to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Review these recommendations from the CDC - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/deciding-to-go-out.html.
The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (grocery stores, pharmacies, etc.) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover-faq.html.
Cloth face coverings are not a substitute for social distancing. Public health officials continue to emphasize that maintaining 6-feet social distancing is crucial to slowing the spread of the virus.
Tools and resources can be found on the DHHS website - dhhs.ne.gov/coronavirus and CDC's website – https://www.cdc.gov/covid19. In addition, DHHS opened a statewide COVID-19 information line to help answer general questions and share the latest information and resources with Nebraskans to help keep them informed. The number is (402) 552-6645 or toll-free at (833) 998-2275; hours of operation are 8 a.m.-8 p.m. CDT, 7 days a week.
DHHS will continue to update Nebraskans through the DHHS website and on Facebook and Twitter as we have new information. The CDC's website is also a good resource for COVID-19 information - https://www.cdc.gov/covid19