Newest Nebraska COVID-19 case attended high school basketball games; health officials rush to ID contact fans

March 11, 2020 - 7:36am

A student from Crofton, Nebraska, is the state’s fifth person to test positive for COVID-19. Since the individual began experiencing symptoms, March 5th state and local health officials are scrambling to alert dozens of people who potentially came in contact with the individual during two girl’s basketball games held last weekend in Lincoln.

The announcement came in a message from the North Central District Health Department late Tuesday night.

“On the evening of March 10th, North Central District Health Department (NCDHD) was made aware of the first presumptive positive coronavirus case in our district,” said a letter distributed on its website and in a letter distributed to the Crofton Public Schools. Crofton, population 670, sits ten miles from Yankton, South Dakota.

State health officials, in a prepared statement, said The person…will be transferred to the Biocontainment Unit at Nebraska Medicine/University of Nebraska Medical Center.” 

The patient’s condition was not listed.

NCDHD listed “potential exposure events” include events attended by people from : 

  • Girls State Basketball Hartington Cedar Catholic vs. Weeping Water Game held in Lincoln, NE, on March 5th at 9:00 AM. This game was held at Lincoln Southwest High School. Exposures may have occurred in the Hartington Cedar Catholic general fan section
  • Girls State Basketball Crofton vs. Bancroft-Rosalie/Lyons-Decatur held in Lincoln, NE, on March 5th at 7:00 PM. This game was held at Lincoln North Star High School. Exposures may have occurred in the Crofton general fan section. 
  • Crofton Elementary forth-sixth grade students and staff who attended school on March 10th 

On Tuesday, officials with the Nebraska State Activities Association had planned to continue with the Boys State High School Basketball championships scheduled to begin on Thursday in Lincoln. NSAA had been reluctant to postpone the games or play the games without fans in attendance.

The fourth presumptive positive case of COVID-19 in Nebraska is a woman in her 40s who lives in Douglas County, according to an update by DHHS late Tuesday. 

The woman had recently traveled to Nevada and California. The case has not yet received final confirmation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She is self-quarantined at home. 

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