OMAHA, Neb. — In Nebraska, the number of people hospitalized with the coronavirus set a record Thursday when it hit 288.
State statistics show that hospital capacity is tightening up with only 22 percent of the state’s intensive care beds available.
The rate of new cases remains high in Nebraska with the total number of cases is approaching 50,000. The state had the eighth-highest rate of new cases, according to an Associated Press analysis of data from Johns Hopkins University. The seven-day average of the positivity rate in Nebraska declined slightly over the past two weeks, going from 12.71% on Sept. 23 to 12.23% on Wednesday.
Nebraska eliminated nearly all of its restrictions related to the coronavirus last month in favor of voluntary guidelines. Gov. Pete Ricketts opposes requiring people to wear masks although local rules in the state’s two largest cities require them.
But for now, it appears that the health care system has capacity to handle the recent surge in coronavirus cases in the state.