LLCHD sees success in reducing COVID within UNL and LPS

COVID-19 cases in classrooms and on campus are dropping at a faster rate than those in the...
COVID-19 cases in classrooms and on campus are dropping at a faster rate than those in the community.(KOLN)
Published: Oct. 18, 2021 at 5:34 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) -This week is fall break for UNL and LPS students, marking the halfway point of the first semester and since the first week of school seven weeks ago, COVID-19 numbers on campus and in classrooms have been dropping. The Health Department said this is good news, not just for students but for the whole community.

Health Director Pat Lopez said she and the department work hand-in-hand with local schools, meeting weekly with K-12 administrators and twice a week with representatives from UNL. So far this academic year things are trending in a positive direction when it comes to COVID-19 in schools and on Campus.

“The biggest thing is there’s been a steady decline in cases,” said Health Director Lopez

10/11 NOW pulled the data from UNL, LPS and Lancaster County’s COVID-19 Dashboards, comparing the week the county’s mask mandate went into effect, the last week of August, to the first week of October, the most recent week complete data is available.

The weekly number of cases dropped 88% at LPS, 77% at UNL and 42% across the county.

“It’s such a relief to know fewer students are getting ill, being isolated,” said Amy Goodburn, UNL.

UNL actually had its lowest positivity rate since the year started last week at 0.77%. Their voluntary vaccine registry also showed 75% of students have gotten the shot.

“We only have one student in isolation housing,” said said Amy Goodburn, UNL. “We’re thrilled with that.”

As for why cases in schools are dropping faster than those in the community, Lopez said there are a lot of factors, but the biggest is the mask mandate.

“I know the mask mandate has been really valuable on campus,” said Health Director Lopez.

She said this success spills into Lancaster County as a whole.

“At 30,000 students and staff they have a huge impact on our community,” said Lopez. “Even though they come and go.”

At the college level and those in K-12.

“Even if we’ve had to make some tough decisions that aren’t always popular, our goal has always been to keep students in school, in the classroom. for learning.” said Lopez. “For social emotional development.”

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