Letter to the Editor

Stop the spread

Friday, July 24, 2020

Dear Editor,

In a July 22, Net Nebraska online article, Southwest Nebraska Public Health Department Director Myra Stoney says they’ve seen 22 COVID-19 cases over the past week, almost double the number reported over the previous three months.

She goes on to say that, "I think the people of Southwest Nebraska are in complete denial that there is a pandemic," She goes on to say that some residents are ignoring social distancing guidelines and aren’t wearing face coverings in public places.

Myra Stoney confirms that her department is doing what it can to educate residents about the dangers of COVID-19.

In the face of this pandemic all the residents of SW Nebraska need to work together to end community spread of this virus.  There are wonderful local resources that can be creatively used to help Nebraskans modify their behaviors to protect themselves and their neighbors.

I suggest that Community Hospital, the YMCA, the library, the Chamber of Commerce, the community college, the health departments and the local educators put forth activities and campaigns to provide information.

Let’s support a “best mask” competition, a recognition of best business practices to protect the community, a get healthy and stay safe program at the Y, the printing and distribution of colorful and attractive public health messages by the Gazette and at the library.

There is so much we can do to protect the community and it is time that we step up and meet the challenge through creativity, joint projects and community, physically distanced activities to raise awareness and support behavior change. Let’s wash our hands, stay physically distanced, wear lovely and unique masks and stay home when sick or if we are in the higher risk groups.

We can stop community spread.

Jayne Lyons,

McCook, Neb.

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