Nebraska officials watching virus cases as 6 more die

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska officials are watching for new outbreaks of the coronavirus that have been seen in other states and “certainly will keep all options open” to try to protect public health, Gov. Pete Ricketts said Thursday.

Ricketts made the comments as the state continued to see new, confirmed cases and deaths. Nebraska reported 142 new cases of the virus and six new deaths, according to the state's online tracking portal.

That brings the total number of known Nebraska cases to 19,452 since the pandemic began, according to the tracker. Of that number, 282 people have died and 14,022 have recovered.

Public and private health officials have tested 184,354 residents in Nebraska so far.

So far, the virus hasn't overwhelmed Nebraska's hospitals as many initially feared. The state dashboard shows 41% of Nebraska's hospital beds, 48% of its intensive care unit beds and 80% of its ventilators are available for use.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough, that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness.

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