County-Level COVID Data Reporting to Resume, State to Get Fewer Monoclonal Antibody Treatments

County-Level COVID Data Reporting to Resume, State to Get Fewer Monoclonal Antibody Treatments
Gov. Pete Ricketts discusses a variety of topics during his news conference Monday, Sept. 20 in Lincoln (Courtesy Photo)
September 20th, 2021 | Scott Miller

More changes are coming related to the hospital staffing emergency declared last month by Governor Pete Ricketts.

Monday morning, Ricketts signed an Executive Order waiving infectious disease statues in relation to HIPAA rules and information disclosure.

The EO allows creation of a Hospital Capacity Dashboard, which will resume more detailed case reporting as long as the hospitalization rate for COVID remains above 10 percent on a 7-day rolling average. “You will be able to see hospitalization capacity. The other tabs will also allow you to go in and look on a county-by-county basis the number of coronavirus cases, and also be able to break down by local health department the number of hospitalizations in those health districts,” said Ricketts.

The new dashboard was anticipated to go live on the DHHS website Monday afternoon.

Ricketts also told reporters the Biden Administration has notified the State it will be cutting back Nebraska’s allocation of monoclonal antibody treatments to just 760 per week. He called the new limit disappointing, and noted more than 800 of the treatments were administered last week.

Ricketts said the state has used the treatments to great success, especially for those receiving the doses in the State Veterans’ Homes. But he also noted Nebraska is not the only state to be told of being reduced. “We have not been given a clear understanding of why our allocation is being cut back, so I don’t have an answer as for why the federal government is cutting us back,” said Ricketts. “I don’t know if it’s production problems or something else, they just told us their cutting back our allocation.”

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