Oct 16, 2020 1:08 AM

DHHS to offer free testing at Gretna Public Schools after social event with students

Posted Oct 16, 2020 1:08 AM

News Release DHHS

LINCOLN – In an effort to support Gretna Public Schools, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Nebraska Public Health Lab (NPHL) collaborated with the school district to offer free COVID-19 testing at Gretna High School.  A recent social event with students from the district school led to an immediate need for testing. 

The recent reorganization in Public Health has allowed for more bandwidth and greater ability for emergency response.  CEO Dannette R. Smith and CMO Gary Anthone, MD continue to evaluate the needs of the Division and improve infrastructure, a necessary step in the continued fight against COVID-19 and future preparation for other occurrences including natural disasters.  The Department used its emergency response trailer to create a temporary testing station. DHHS Incident Commander, Angie Ling said, “This was a great utilization of an asset that hadn't been utilized in a while.  We hadn't used this unit for quite some time, but because of the new organizational structure, we were able to deploy staff and leverage our strong relationship with NPHL to support Gretna."  The testing event concluded at 3:00 PM with 342 tests completed. 

Dr. Rich Beran, superintendent of schools, reminds parents to continue to follow appropriate mitigation procedures. Beran said, “I certainly understand the want for students and parents to take part in social activities, especially those that are considered a rite of passage; however we must remain vigilant in our efforts to minimize the spread of COVID-19 in our schools and community."       

Continue to Take Preventive Actions to Limit Spread

  1. Wear a mask – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers tips on how to select, wear and clean a reusable mask - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/about-face-coverings.html 
  2. Watch your distance and avoid crowded places - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/social-distancing.html 
  3. Wash your hands - https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html 
  4. Know your risk - https://www.nebraskamed.com/COVID/7-steps-to-identify-risky-covid-19-situations 
  5. Stay home - if sick or if you've been exposed to COVID-19 to help protect others and prevent larger outbreaks - https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/index.html  and https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/quarantine.html 
  6. Get tested - if you've been exposed or have symptoms via TestNebraska.com  or TestNebraska.com/es  for Spanish, or another testing site in your community