City of Lincoln and Lancaster County Coronavirus (COVID-19) Mitigation and Response

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Mitigation and Response

Latest Statistics

What's Happening Now

Face Covering Requirement for Lincoln and Lancaster County

Information and frequently asked questions

Severe Risk of COVID-19 Spread

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The dial's previous week pointer is at 8 on a scale of 1-8 (1 is low risk; 8 is severe risk). The dial's current week pointer is also at 8.
Severe High Moderate Low

This COVID-19 Risk Dial provides a summary of current conditions in the Lincoln-Lancaster County community. Each color incorporates federal and national guidance published by public health experts and is coupled with specific guidance.

Five key measures are used to determine the position of the Risk Dial: Case Numbers; Testing Capacity; Positivity Rate; Contact Tracing; and Hospital Capacity.

This is only guidance and does not replace federal, state, or local directed health measures. At-risk and vulnerable populations should take stringent precautions.

Community Guidance and Recommendations
Outside the Home
Physical Distancing Outside the Home
  • Stay at home unless traveling for work, school, medical care or food
  • Individual outdoor activities such as walking, biking, etc. are acceptable
  • Distance at least 6 feet from anyone outside the home
  • Work from home if possible
  • No contact with others outside of those that live in your home
Face Masks Outside the Home
  • Always wear a face mask when outside of the home and near (within 6 feet) others in all situations indoors and outdoors
Hand Washing Outside the Home
  • Frequently wash hands for at least 20 seconds, especially after touching high contact surface sneezing/coughing/touching face, or before eating
  • Use hand sanitizer when handwashing is inaccessible or infeasible
Illness Monitoring Outside the Home
  • If ill with Flu-like or COVID-like symptoms, stay at home, get tested, even for essential personnel
  • Avoid any contact with symptomatic people
  • Daily temperature checks at work
Disinfecting Outside the Home
  • Avoid bare hand contact with any high touch surface
  • Use barrier such as paper towel or clothing when bare hand contact is unavoidable
  • Wash hands or apply sanitizer after touching high contact surfaces
  • Enhanced disinfection, especially for high contact surfaces (door/other handles, light switches, bathroom fixtures)
At Home
Physical Distancing at Home
  • No gatherings with non-household members
  • If someone in your home is sick with COVID-like or Flu-like symptoms they should get tested and stay away (isolate) from other household members. Everyone in the household should wear a mask and keep a minimum of 6 feet of distance
Face Masks at Home
  • Require face masks for anyone to enter your home that is not part of your household
  • If someone in your home is sick with COVID-like or Flu-like symptoms they should get tested, everyone should wear a face mask and keep 6 feet of distance if possible
  • No face masks for people who live in home if they are not sick with COVID-like or Flu-like symptoms, unless they are under quarantine as a result of being exposed to someone who is infected
Hand Washing at Home
  • Frequently wash hands for at least 20 seconds, especially after touching high contact surfaces, sneezing/coughing/touching face, or before eating
Illness Monitoring at Home
  • Daily temperature check
  • Continuously monitor for COVID-like or Flu-like symptoms
  • If symptomatic, self-isolate, get tested and stay isolated unless you get a negative test
  • If symptoms become worse contact healthcare provider
Disinfecting at Home
  • Avoid bare hand contact with any high touch surface
  • Use barrier such as paper towel or clothing when bare hand contact is unavoidable
  • Wash hands or apply sanitizer after touching high contact surfaces
  • Enhanced disinfection, especially for high contact surfaces (door/other handles, light switches, bathroom fixtures)
At-Risk and
Vulnerable Populations

For adults over age 65, anyone with underlying health conditions, and other populations at heightened risk from COVID-19:

  • Stay home
  • Rely on help for needs outside the home (groceries, medications, etc.)
  • Distance from those working outside of the home
  • Wear a face mask around others

Visit Business Resources for business reopening guidance and recommendations.

Free Drive-Through Testing

The CDC has expanded the list of symptoms for COVID-19 to include these:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Chills
  • Repeated shaking with chills
  • Repeated muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell

Those who experience any of these symptoms are urged to access drive-through testing offered by Bryan Health, CHI Health St. Elizabeth and Test Nebraska.

Residents begin the testing process with a free online risk assessment available at BryanHealth.com, CHIHealth.com or TestNebraska.com.

If testing is recommended, individuals will be given an order and referred to one of the testing sites. Only those with an order and referral from Bryan Health, CHI Health St. Elizabeth or Test Nebraska or an order from their doctor are permitted at the drive-through sites. Those who need assistance may contact the Health Department at 402-441-8006.

If you currently have no symptoms, you do not need to contact your health care provider or use the online screening tool at this time. However, please keep your essential medical appointments, and if you have a true emergency, call 911 for assistance.

Message from Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird

Lincoln-Lancaster County Directed Health Measures

Those with questions about the Directed Health Measures should contact LLCHD at 402-441-6280.

New Local Directed Health Measure in effect
Wednesday, November 25
Face coverings required in indoor spaces

The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department has issued a new local Directed Health Measure (DHM) that states any individual or entity which owns or operates any premises other than a residence, including but not limited to private and public educational institutions or school districts, shall require all individuals age five (5) and older to wear a face covering over their mouth and nose while indoors unless the individual is able to and maintains at least six (6) feet of separation at all times and is not in the same room or workspace from anyone else who is not their household member. The DHM also requires business owners to ensure their patrons age five and older wear face coverings any time they cannot maintain six feet of separation with non-household members.

The DHM goes into effect Wednesday, November 25 and continues until December 16.

The DHM includes exceptions. Masks are not required for the following:

  • Is engaged in federal, state, or county government services in the location those services are provided;
  • Is engaged in exercise and six (6) feet of separation can be maintained at all times;
  • Is engaged in an occupation preventing the wearing of a face covering;
  • Is obtaining a service or purchasing goods or services that requires the temporary removal of the face covering during the service or the purchase;
  • Is giving a speech, lecture, or broadcast to an audience so long as six (6) feet of distancing from other individuals is maintained and only while said speech, lecture, or broadcast is being delivered; or,
  • Cannot otherwise wear a face covering because of a medical condition, a mental health condition, or a disability that prevents the wearing of a face covering.

Mayor Gaylor Baird said the City will continue to focus on education rather than enforcement, but will prosecute repeated offenses or deliberate non-compliance. Those who observe suspected violations should not call the Police or Sheriff's 911 or non-emergency numbers. Those lines of communication must remain open for emergencies. Those situations should be reported to UPLNK either through the phone app or online at UPLNK.lincoln.ne.gov. Businesses with questions on the DHM may call 402-441-6280.

Visit Business Resources for business reopening guidance and recommendations.

Effective November 25, 2020

Gathering Restrictions

  • Indoor gatherings will be limited to no more than 10 people excluding staff.
  • Outdoor gatherings will be limited to no more than 25 people.
  • Gatherings include but are not limited to indoor or outdoor arenas, indoor or outdoor auctions, stadiums, tracks, fairgrounds, festivals, zoos, auditoriums, large event conference rooms, meeting halls, indoor theaters, libraries, swimming pools, or any other confined indoor or outdoor space.
  • Operators of any state licensed company which allows the consumption of alcohol while on city streets, county roads, or state highways, including but not limited to limousines, party buses, or pedal pubs, shall not be allowed to operate until after December 16.
  • Groups shall be no larger than eight (8) individuals.
  • Any indoor or outdoor venue that holds more than 500 individuals must submit an event plan to the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department and receive approval before any event regardless of the numbers of individuals attending. No event not already approved shall take place until after December 16, 2020.
  • Door to door sales are not allowed and no new permits will be issued for peddlers.
  • No indoor team contact sports, limited-contact sports, or non-contact sports activities, practices, games, or competitions for K-12 children, including but not limited to school and club sponsored events, shall be allowed until after December 7, 2020. Youth sports will be revaluated prior to December 7, 2020.
    Contact
    • Basketball
    • Boxing
    • Cheerleading
    • Football, tackle
    • Gymnastics
    • Hockey
    • Lacrosse
    • Martial arts
    • Rugby
    • Soccer
    • Wrestling
    Limited-Contact
    • Baseball
    • Football, flag or touch
    • Softball
    • Volleyball
    Non-Contact
    • Badminton
    • Bowling
    • Crew/Rowing
    • Curling
    • Dance
    • Rodeo* and horseback riding
    • Swimming
    • Track and field events
    • *Exception for rodeo as there is limited or no contact

Allowed Must keep 6 feet from others

  • Restaurants and bars can allow up to 50% occupancy and they are required to space individuals, or groups of 8 or less, 6 feet apart. Patrons/parties must be seated at individual tables and be a minimum of 6 feet apart and remain seated at their table unless placing an order or using the restroom. No participation games such as billiards or darts are allowed. If a patron is not seated, they must wear a face covering over their nose and mouth. Employees such as wait staff and cashiers shall wear face coverings over their nose and mouth. Special requirements for disinfection must be followed.
  • Self-service food buffets are allowed; Operators of buffets shall provide hand sanitizer for patrons to use prior to using utensils; and change utensils at least every 30 minutes.
  • Alcohol sales for on premises consumption is restricted. Alcohol can only be consumed while eating a meal.
  • Restaurants must stop serving alcoholic beverages at 8:45 p.m., and must close at 9 p.m.
  • Restaurants may remain open after 9 p.m. for take and out delivery orders, including to go alcohol if authorized by state law.
  • If an establishment does not have a permit that allows serving food, they may still dispense carryout alcohol if allowed by law, however no consumption on the premises of alcohol can occur. Bars must close at 9 p.m.
  • Bars may remain open after 9 p.m. for takeout and delivery alcohol orders if authorized by state law.
  • Barber Shops, Cosmetology Establishments, Art Facilities, and Massage Therapists may operate but must not have more than 25 patrons in a room or space at the same time. A minimum of 6 feet shall be maintained between all workstations. Employees and patrons must wear face coverings. Aestheticians, body art establishments, barbers and, cosmetologists may remove customer face coverings to perform services on the customer’s face.
  • Private and public educational institutions or school districts are excepted from the prohibition on gatherings during any in-person education.
  • Exceptions for gathering limitations have also been established for certain essential businesses (such as schools, grocery and retail stores, office environments, factories, etc.). A complete list can be found in the DHM.
  • Childcare shall be carried out in groups of:
    • fifteen (15) or fewer children age 2 and under;
    • twenty (20) or fewer children age 3;
    • twenty-four (24) or fewer children between ages 4-5;
    • thirty (30) or fewer children ages 6 and above.

    To the extent possible, providers shall maintain the same groups of children daily. Child care providers, if wearing a face covering, can work with different groups of children.

  • Gyms, fitness centers/clubs, health clubs, health spas, martial arts studios, and gymnastics gyms may operate gyms and fitness centers with up to 10 people or 25% of rated occupancy, whichever is greater. Participants must maintain 6 feet of distance from others at all times. In addition, no indoor team contact sports or limited-contact sports are allowed between two or more players regardless of age (i.e. basketball, volley ball etc.).
  • Courts of law, meetings or sessions of the Nebraska Legislature, or operations of any other political subdivision. However, all individuals shall wear face coverings of the nose and mouth while present in any areas open to the public while in the Hall of Justice unless doing so would be contrary to the individual’s health because of a medical condition.
  • Essential federal, state, county, and city operations
  • Election offices and polling places on an election day
  • Public utilities
  • Congregate living settings, group homes, residential drug and/or mental health treatment facilities, and shelters
  • Airport travel
  • Residences and dwelling units
  • Religious gatherings, including weddings and funerals continue to be governed by the current State DHM.

Those in these excepted settings should maintain at least six feet of separation between individuals as much as possible.

Those who observe suspected violations should not call the Police or Sheriff's 911 or non-emergency numbers. Those situations should be reported to UPLNK either through the phone app or online at UPLNK.lincoln.ne.gov. The initial response to any complaint will be handled by LLCHD. Health officials will provide education to those who need it about why compliance is so vital to our community's safety. UPLNK cases are acknowledged when staff receive and enter them. They are closed after they have been dispatched and investigated.


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