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The Central District Health Department works hard to provide the most accurate and up to date information available. If you have questions on any of the pieces presented here please contact us at (308) 385-5175. 


Boosters and Third Doses For All COVID-19 Vaccines Available Soon

Grand Island – With the recommendation from the CDC announced on Thursday, Central District Health Department will now administer COVID-19 vaccine booster shots to specific populations starting on Monday, October 25, 2021.

Previously, just those who have had the Pfizer vaccine were eligible for booster shots or third doses. With the CDC approval, those who have had Johnson & Johnson or Moderna vaccine are eligible for a booster of any of the three available vaccines, known as Mix and Match.

Specifically:

·CDC recommends a third dose for Moderna vaccine recipients at least six months after a person’s initial course for those 65 and older, and those as young as 18 who are at higher risk due to their underlying health conditions, or where they work or live

·Those 18 and over who had a Johnson & Johnson (J&J) shot are eligible for one booster shot two months after their first shot and may receive J&J, Moderna, or Pfizer

·Those who received two doses of either Moderna or Pfizer vaccine are eligible for one booster shot six months after their first shot and may receive J&J, Moderna or Pfizer

We are also expecting approval for pediatric doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for those age 5-11 by the first week in November. We are well prepared for both and have ample supplies of all three adult vaccines. In addition, we expect to receive Pfizer pediatric vaccine doses this week and next week. Parents should ask their child’s pediatrician Health Care Provider about specific questions regarding concerns for their child. You can find more at the Center for Disease Control’s website at www.cdc.gov.

CDHD provides COVID-19 vaccinations from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Mondays through Fridays with Thursday clinics running until 7 pm. We also offer drive through clinics on Mondays and Tuesday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm. You can find the most recent information on COVID-19 and more at our website, www.cdhd.ne.gov. We are also available for questions at (308) 385-5175. 


Central District Sees Three COVID-19 Deaths Over the Last 7 Days

Grand Island - The Central District is reporting three deaths earlier this week from COVID-19. Of the three, one person was in their 40s, one in their 50s and one in their 70s. None were “fully vaccinated” against COVID-19.

This comes at a time when hospitals in the Central District, made up of Hall, Hamilton and Merrick Counties, are seeing 0-8% ICU bed availability (0-1 beds open) with a total of 21-27 COVID cases requiring hospitalization each day.

In addition to three deaths, the Central District saw 205 confirmed cases of COVID-19 over the past 7 days with test positivity rate of 35 percent, which keeps our “transmission risk dial” in the “high transmission” category. A majority of new cases in the past 7 days are among those age 49 and younger.

With transmission high and vaccination rates in the district rising slowly, CDHD recommends those 12 and up receive a COVID-19 vaccine to protect themselves. First and second doses, along with flu shots and COVID booster shots, are now available at drive-thru clinics at our office, 1137 South Locust Street in Grand Island, from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Monday and Tuesday and indoors from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Wednesdays – Fridays with Thursday clinics running until 7 p.m.

We also offer drive thru COVID-19 testing through Nomi Health from 8 am – 3 pm Wednesdays through Fridays at our offices. Nomi Health offers both rapid tests, which are accurate if you have symptoms and yield results in one hour, and PCR tests which are accurate whether or not you have symptoms and yield results in 24-36 hours.

You can find the most recent information on COVID-19 and more at our website, www.cdhd.ne.gov. We are also available for questions at (308) 385-5175. 


Grand Island- On Thursday, the CDC approved third doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to select groups. As COVID-19 continues to spread across Nebraska, CDHD will begin providing additional doses of the vaccine to those listed below. Please note, each individual must have previously had two doses of the Pfizer vaccine).

The CDC recommends:

·         people 65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings should receive a booster shot at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series.

·         people aged 50–64 years with underlying medical conditions should receive a third dose at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series.

·         people aged 18–49 years with underlying medical conditions may receive a third dose at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks.

·         people aged 18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting may receive a third dose at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks.

CDHD will being providing Pfizer shots and annual flu shots on Mondays and Tuesdays 8:30am to 4:30pm September 27th at 1137 South Locust St. through a drive-through clinic in the parking lot. We also offer vaccine clinics from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Mondays – Fridays and 8:30 am – 7 pm on Thursdays. No appointment is needed. Those seeking boosters must present their COVID-19 vaccination cards and insurance cards if applicable.

You can find the most recent information on COVID-19 and more at our website, www.cdhd.ne.gov. We are also available for questions at (308) 385-5175. 

Cases of COVID-19 continue to increase across Hall, Hamilton and Merrick Counties. In the last 7 days, there have been 214 new confirmed cases with a positivity rate is 42% meaning that approximately 4 out of every 10 people who received a test are positive for the COVID-19 virus.

Of the new cases this past 7 days, 29% (62) are children under age 19. According to the CDC, rates of COVID-19–associated hospitalization among children increased rapidly from late June to mid-August 2021, due in large part to the Delta variant. With more activities resuming, including in-person school and a return of younger children to childcare settings, preventive measures to reduce the number of severe COVID-19 cases are critical. Universal indoor masking is recommended for all teachers, staff members, students, and visitors in kindergarten through grade 12 schools, regardless of vaccination status.

CDC also recommends:

-Persons older than 2-years-old who are unvaccinated, as well as vaccinated persons in areas of substantial or high transmission, wear masks in all indoor public spaces.
-Childcare centers serving children too young to be vaccinated consider implementing universal indoor masking for persons 2-years-old and older. 
-All persons who are eligible should receive COVID-19 vaccines to reduce the risk for severe disease for themselves and others with whom they come into contact, including children who are currently too young to be vaccinated.

Weekly COVID-19-associated rates among children and adolescents rose nearly five-fold during late June-mid-August 2021 coinciding with increased circulation of the highly transmissible Delta variant. Hospitalization rates are 10 times higher among unvaccinated than among fully vaccinated adolescents.

CDHD provides COVID-19 vaccinations from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Mondays through Fridays with Thursday clinics running until 8 pm. You can find the most recent information on COVID-19 and more at our website, www.cdhd.ne.gov. We are also available for questions at (308) 385-5175. 


West Nile Confirmed in the Central District

Grand Island, NE –West Nile Virus (WNV) was detected in the mosquito population in Hall County on Tuesday, August 24. 

West Nile Virus is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito that has picked up the virus by feeding on an infected bird.  In turn, mosquitoes pass the virus to humans.  Viral activity has been low throughout the State this year.  However, the Central District Health Department is urging everyone to take precautions.

Even though viral activity is low, the presence of West Nile Virus in the area does warrant some attention with mosquitoes, especially at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are most active. With the Nebraska State Fair currently underway and many spending more time outdoors, it’s important to know how to avoid West Nile Virus.

West Nile Virus deserves consideration as approximately 1 in 150 persons infected with the West Nile Virus will develop a more severe form of disease. Serious illness can occur in people of any age, however people over age 50 and some immunocompromised persons (i.e. transplant patients) are at the highest risk when infected with WNV.  Most people (about 4 out of 5) who are infected with West Nile Virus will not develop any type of illness (an asymptomatic infection), however you cannot know ahead of time if you'll get sick if you are infected.

The easiest and best way to avoid WNV is to prevent mosquito bites.

When you are outdoors, use insect repellent containing an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET. Follow the directions on the package.

Many mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Be sure to use insect repellent and wear long sleeves and pants at these times, or consider staying indoors during these hours.

Make sure you have good screens on your windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out.

Get rid of mosquito breeding sites by emptying standing water from flower pots, buckets and barrels. Change the water in pet dishes and replace the water in bird baths weekly. Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out. Keep children's wading pools empty and, on their sides, when they aren't being used.

For more information contact the Central District Health Department at (308) 385-5175.


Grand Island – The Pfizer vaccine to protect against COVID-19 was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday for those 18 years of age and over. The vaccine continues to be available to children 12 – 17 years of age as part of an Emergency Use Authorization and is expected to be fully approved in the fall.

This approval will not affect regional availability of the vaccine. To date, over 92 million people in the United States have received the Pfizer vaccine of the 170 million Americans who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

The approval of the Pfizer vaccine, which will be marketed under the name Comirnaty, removes one more barrier for those who have been hesitant or have been waiting to receive their vaccination. With full FDA approval, the FDA has also released their safety and effectiveness data, facts sheets, frequently asked questions and much more information that you can find at www.fda.gov. There is no change in the vaccine from the Emergency Use Authorization up through FDA approval.

As cases in the Central District continue to rise and transmissibility remains dangerously high, vaccination is the best line of defense against COVID-19. As of today our positivity rate is 31% and more than 10 percent of hospital beds in our district are currently taken by those suffering from COVID-19.

As the summer ends and more activities begin to take place indoors, if you have not yet received a COVID-19 vaccination, it is important to get one as soon as possible.  CDHD recommends a layered approach to prevention, including vaccine, masks, social distancing, staying home when ill, and frequent handwashing.

The Central District Health Department as well as pharmacies and doctor’s offices around the area offer the Pfizer vaccine during daily clinics. The Health Department is open from 9 am – 4:30 pm Mondays – Fridays with Thursday clinics running until 8 pm. We will also be at the Nebraska State Fair from Noon – 7 pm daily and have other clinics in the community over the next few weeks. Find out more at www.cdhd.ne.gov/COVID-19.


The United Way and the Central District Health Department are teaming up to promote COVID-19 vaccination in our community. 

A new campaign featuring community members stories about "why I got vaccinated" will be running on social media and in poster form through the end of August. In addition to the campaign, we are offering the vaccinated and unvaccinated alike a chance to tell their stories.

If you have not been vaccinated against COVID-19, come to the Health Department from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm Mondays - Fridays (8:30 am - 8 pm on Thursdays) to get your shot and be entered into a prize drawing at the end of August. Prizes include VISA gift cards, certificates to local businesses and more.

If you have been vaccinated, we want your story. You can come to the Health Department during business hours, get a photo and tell us why you got vaccinated and be entered into a separate raffle for prizes. This is your chance to tell the community why you are choosing to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

You can find information on the COVID-19 vaccine from the Center for Disease Control here

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