BEATRICE – Beatrice Community Hospital officials are reporting what they are calling “presumed positive” cases of COVID-19 in the community.
BCH issued a news release Monday said the cases are of people presenting symptoms consistent with COVID-19, but are testing negative for other common viruses, including influenza.

Currently, there are no laboratory confirmed COVID-19 cases in Beatrice.

Patients designated as “presumed positive” are instructed to return home under quarantine and monitor their symptoms. If the symptoms worsen, they are instructed to contact their health provider as a next step. Hospital care could then be a further option.

Beatrice Fire and Rescue Chief Brian Daake says if positive cases are found to exist, there would be additional precautions triggered for EMS personnel.
"On our end, with the ambulance service, that will trigger a few more protective measures taken to protect our patients and protect our paramedics. At that next level, that will be our elected officials decision on what other kind of recommendations and requirements they can do".

There was no immediate information if the cases that are presumed positive came from Beatrice or another community. Beatrice Mayor Stan Wirth says the city and county continue to ask people to take the same precautions recommended earlier.

"This could have some far-reaching effects on different businesses that have maybe larger gatherings, even though they are not supposed to have those larger gatherings....but some of those are going on. So, there could be some further restrictions. But at this point, it is a presumptive it's just kind of a wait-and-see attitude that we need to take".

Officials have been urging people to wash their hands frequently, practice social distancing and stay home if your not feeling well. Anyone who is suffering from a fever, cough, sore throat or having trouble breathing, should contact the Beatrice Community Hospital hotline number, at 1-800-859-0240. A registered nurse will assist the person in determining the next steps to be taken.