Six new COVID-19 cases and 13 recoveries were announced on Wednesday during Panhandle Public Health District’s daily briefing.

All of the cases, except a Cheyenne County woman in her 40s, were determined to be close contacts.

“The investigation is underway right now,” Scotts Bluff County Health director Paulette Schnell said of the case.

The others include one male in his 20s from Box Butte County, a Morrill County man in his 30s and three Scotts Bluff County residents, a woman in her 20s, a man in his 30s and a man in his 40s.

“We have 13 new recoveries to announce today,” Schnell said.

Six were in Scotts Bluff County, three from Morrill, two from Dawes and one each from Sheridan and Banner counties.

A total of 5,692 tests have been conducted with a cumulative positive rate of 6 percent. There have been 344 positive tests in the Panhandle Public Health District. Of those, 99 cases are active while 241 are recovered.

A total of 34 people have been hospitalized with one remaining in the hospital.

Health officials reminded the community about the importance of taking quarantine and isolation recommendations seriously. In order to be considered “recovered,” a person must quarantine for a minimum of 10 days and be symptom free for three days in a row, Schnell said.

Close contacts are asked to quarantine for 14 days, as it can take that long for the disease to develop.

Testing opportunities are available across the district. Chadron Community Hospital is offering testing to those who sign up through testnebraska.com from 7-9 a.m. on Monday and Fridays.

Community Action Health Center in Gering offers testing Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 7-8 a.m. Sign up is available online: https://tinyurl.com/y7msahzq.

Testing will take place in the Gordon Clinic parking lot from 3-4 p.m. on July 13 and July 16. There is no charge. For an appointment, call 308-282-6334 or 308-282-1442.

Morrill County Community Hospital is offering tests daily, as are many other local hospitals and clinics.

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community. Let us know what's going on!

Kamie Stephen is a reporter with the Star-Herald. She can be reached at 308-632-9041 or via email at kamie.stephen@starherald.com.

Kamie Stephen is a reporter with the Star-Herald. She can be reached at 308-632-9041 or via email at kamie.stephen@starherald.com.

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