COVID-19: Protecting yourself and those around you.Below are resources regarding COVID-19 in our community and how to prevent its spread. Omaha-Area Assistance for Families and Individuals: Updated April 8th
Experiencing Symptoms?Follow guidance from Nebraska Medicine and state officials to determine what next steps to take.
Questions about COVID-19?
211 is here for you, 24/7.
Call: 2-1-1 or 402-444-6666
Text: Your zip code to 898211
The 211 Helpline can help answer your questions about COVID-19 and connect you to community resources if you are looking for assistance with food, utilities, housing, health care and more. Get in touch today.
If you are experiencing respiratory illness symptoms like:
- Sore throat
And are age 65 or older, immunocompromised, live in a long-term care facility, or have been diagnosed with:
- Heart disease
- Lung disease
- Chronic kidney disease
Call your local primary care provider prior to making a clinic appointment, visiting an Immediate Care Clinic or the emergency room. Medical staff will provide screening evaluation and recommendation on next steps. If you are a Nebraska Medicine patient you can call 402-559-0041.
If you are younger than age 65, and otherwise healthy, at this time the best guidance is to stay home, get plenty of rest, drink fluids and take pain and fever medications like acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
To view this information directly from Nebraska Medicine’s website, click here. To learn more about symptoms and when they can start to show, please read Nebraska Medicine’s “COVID-19 SYMPTOMS AND TREATMENT.”
I was in contact with someone who was around another person with a confirmed case of Coronavirus. What do I do?
If you are a secondary contact of someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 (for example, your co-worker may have been exposed to a patient with COVID-19) and are not experiencing any respiratory symptoms, you do not need to be screened for COVID-19. You are encouraged to self-monitor by being aware of any new respiratory symptoms and checking your temperature for fever. Call your physician for directions should any symptoms develop. You should not go to the emergency department unless you have a life threatening condition.
Source: Nebraska Medicine
I recently traveled to a country where Coronavirus is being transmitted. What do I do?
If you have been exposed to someone with a confirmed case of COVID-19, or recently returned to Nebraska in the last 14 days from a country where COVID-19 transmission is occurring, and have a fever ≥100.4 and/or respiratory symptoms, you should immediately call your county health department for evaluation and diagnostic testing.
- Douglas: 402.444.3400
- Sarpy/Cass: 402.537.6970
- Pottawattamie: 712.328.5777
If you recently visited mainland China, but aren’t having symptoms, please report your travel to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services and self-isolate for 14 days.
If you recently visited South Korea, Iran, Italy, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan or Thailand, please report your travel to the Nebraska Department of health and Human Services and monitor yourself for fever, cough or shortness of breath twice daily.
If you feel sick with fever, cough, or are having difficulty breathing:
- Seek medical care right away. Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your recent travel and your symptoms
- Avoid contact with others
- Do not travel on public transportation while sick
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing
- Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds to avoid spreading the virus to others
- Wash your hands with soap and water immediately after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose. If soap and water are not readily available, you can use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%-95% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
Source: Nebraska Medicine
I'm not sick, but I had contact with someone who has a confirmed case of Coronavirus. What do I do?
If you are not ill but had contact with a person confirmed to have COVID-19, notify your County Department of Public Health.
- Douglas: 402-444-3400
- Sarpy/Cass: 402-537-6970
- Pottawattamie: 712-328-5777
If it is determined that you should be quarantined at home, you will be monitored by staff from your local or state health department.
While being monitored:
- Stay at home except to get medical care
- Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home
- Call ahead before visiting your doctor
- Wear a facemask
- Cover your coughs and sneezes
- Clean your hands often
- Avoid sharing personal household items
- Clean all “high-touch” surfaces everyday
- Monitor your symptoms
Source: Nebraska Medicine
What are some credible COVID-19 information sources?
Centers and organizations
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- The World Health Organization (WHO)
- United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNTWO)
- National Ebola Training and Education Center (NETEC)
State health departments
- Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services | Find your local county health department
- Iowa Department of Public Health | Find your local public health agency
COVID-19 ResourcesExplore these resources to learn more about COVID-19 prevention, symptoms, guidance and updates.
Nebraska Medicine has compiled information about the virus, including how to talk to kids about it, symptoms to watch for and answers to common questions.
Nebraska’s Department of Health and Human Services has compiled information and resources, including guidance for schools, businesses, first responders and more.
Iowa Department of Public Health
How COVID-19 Spreads: Nebraska Medicine
Common COVID-19 Questions, Answered: Nebraska Medicine
Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
How to talk to kids about COVID-19
Source: Nebraska Medicine
Make your own hand sanitizer
Source: Nebraska Medicine
True or False? COVID-19 Quiz
Source: Nebraska Medicine
COVID-19 At a GlanceHelp your family, friends, clients and coworkers stay informed by sharing these resources.
Who to ContactThere are several organizations who are here to help answer your questions about COVID-19.
If you believe you have COVID-19:
Contact Your Primary Care Provider
If you have COVID-19 symptoms or are due for a visit and have recently traveled to an area with widespread outbreak, or had close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, call your primary care provider prior to making a clinic appointment, visiting an Immediate Care Clinic or the emergency room.
Contact Your State or County Health Department
Omaha Metro Counties
- Douglas County Health Department: An information line is open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 4:00pm. Call 402-444-3400 to get in touch.
- Pottawattamie County Health Department: An information line is open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 4:00pm. Call 712-890-5368 or 712-890-5369 to get in touch.
- Sarpy/Cass County Health Department: Call 402-537-6970 to receive guidance and next steps if you have returned from Mainland China or a high risk country in the past 14 days.
If you have questions about COVID-19:
Many organizations can help answer your questions. Please know you can always contact your physician or state/county health departments with questions as well.
United Way of the Midlands’ 211 Helpline
Our 211 Helpline is here to share general information about COVID-19 with our community. If someone you know is looking for information or wants to be able to share a community resource, the 211 Helpline is here. Call 2-1-1 (for 402-444-6666) or text your zip code to 898211 to speak with one of our helpline specialists. 211 is not able to assist with medical questions regarding COVID-19. If you think you or someone you know may be infected, please read this guidance first.
The 211 Helpline is also here to help you and your family access community resources. Our specialists can help you learn more about local programs and funding in these areas:
- Utility Assistance
- Rent Assistance
- Food Pantries
- Shelter and Housing Services
- Abuse Prevention
- Behavioral Health Services
- Support Groups
- Senior Services
- Disaster Services
- Government Shutdown Support
- Legal Services
- Health Care Services
- Family Support
- Financial Assistance and Education
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
CDC Information Line: 800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636); TTY (888) 232-6348
Hours: Monday–Friday, 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. CT (English and Spanish)
Extended hours for coronavirus disease 2019 questions only: Saturday – Sunday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. CT (English)
You can also submit a question to CDC Info via email.
Human Services ResourcesAre you experiencing unemployment, struggling with mental health or food, or facing eviction? Find local guidance and resources from government and community agencies.
To view a comprehensive list of community programs and information, please click the button below. This document will be updated as frequently as possible.
Document last updated: April 8th, 9am
Unemployment Eligibility and Updates
The Governor has waived the following eligibility requirements for unemployment insurance benefits for claims filed between March 22 and May 2. This timeframe will be evaluated as the COVID-19 situation progresses.
Workers needing to file for unemployment benefits should do so online at NEworks.nebraska.gov. The NEworks mobile app is available to download free for those who don’t have computer access. For technical assistance, access the NEworks live chat feature, email email@example.com or call 402-458-2500.
The maximum weekly benefit amount for 2020 is $440. Your individual benefits are calculated by identifying the highest quarter earnings in your base period. That amount is then divided by 13 to arrive at the average weekly wage, then divided again by two and rounded down to the next even dollar amount to arrive at your weekly benefit amount. Filing your new claim online will allow you to receive an estimate of your weekly benefit amount at the end of the filing process. You will be advised of this amount when you receive your monetary determination.
Iowa Workforce Development has guidance on when unemployments may be available for those impacted by COVID-19. Employees should contact their employer regarding potential telecommuting, sick leave, PTO, FMLA, Disability, and other options they may be offering. If those options are not available, employees may file for unemployment insurance benefits to determine their eligibility.
HUD Prohibits Forclosure and Evictions
On March 18th, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson, in consultation with the Trump Administration and the Coronavirus Task Force, authorized the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to implement an immediate foreclosure and eviction moratorium for single family homeowners with FHA-insured mortgages for the next 60 days. These moratoriums are part of the continued effort by President Trump to address impacts to the financial well-being of America’s individuals, families, and businesses caused by Coronavirus (COVID-19). Learn more.
Mental Health Resources
Free Resources include:
- Disaster Distress Helpline – (800) 985-5990, or text TalkWithUs to 66746
- Boys Town National Hotline – (800) 448-3000, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Nebraska Family Helpline – (888) 866-8660 for those especially concerned about a youth
- Tips for Staying Mentally Strong During COVID-19
- Tools from Calm to help you take breaks
Nebraska DHHS Children & Family Services Updates
If you benefit or utilize DHHS services, guidance and program changes due to COVID-19 can be found here. This includes information regarding child care, foster care, child welfare, SNAP, EBT, disability benefits and more.
Guidance for Child Care Providers
Child care providers and centers should work to follow White House’s guidance (from March 16) limiting social gatherings to no more than ten (10) person guidance. These establishments should use common sense when applying the guidance with the goal of reducing class sizes and increasing space between children. This is not a mandate. Learn more.
In the context of the ongoing coronavirus response, Buffett Early Childhood Institute is hoping to learn about the challenges and needs of early childhood care and education providers in Nebraska, in order to share with state and local officials, policymakers, and others. If you are a child care provider, please complete this short survey.
Tax Filing Day – Extended to July 15
All VITA and AARP tax sites are currently closed through March 30, possibly longer, in Iowa, Nebraska, and Illinois.
- IRS – The tax filing deadline has moved to July 15 instead of April 15.
- Iowa Department of Revenue – The tax filing and payment deadline has moved to July 31, 2020.
- Nebraska Department of Revenue – The tax filing and payment deadline has moved to July 15, 2020.
State Delegate Information
Follow Nebraska’s Federal Delegation on social media to see their communications and opportunities to participate in townhalls.
- Governor Pete Ricketts
- Senator Deb Fischer
- Senator Ben Sasse
- Rep. Don Bacon – Congressional District 2
- Rep. Adrian Smith – Congressional District 3
- Rep. Jeff Fortenberry – Congressional District 1
Help families affected by COVID-19
Our neighbors need us more than ever.
We know that COVID-19 has impacted the physical, mental and financial well-being of thousands of people across the Omaha-Council Bluffs metro. In these unprecedented times, United Way of the Midlands is committed to doing all we can to assist Omaha-Council Bluffs metro residents. In the form below, you can choose to support neighbors directly affected by COVID-19 with food, healthcare, rent/mortgage or utlity assistance.
Why is food assistance important?
During this critical time, food security is a major concern for many families. Donations made to this area will go to Foodbank for the Heartland and Together Inc. These agencies have been responsive to the ever-changing needs of the most vulnerable in our community and have deployed drive-up mobile units and established pick-up windows to ensure several access points to meals are accessible throughout the community.
Why is healthcare assistance important?
Our healthcare workers are on the front lines fighting this worldwide pandemic to keep our local community healthy. Donations made to this area will go to Charles Drew Health Center and OneWorld Community Health Centers. These health centers are located in the communities of some of our most vulnerable neighbors and need our support. The more support we can provide to these health centers, the fewer tragedies we will experience in our community during an already difficult time.
Why is rent/mortgage assistance important?
A family’s home is their foundation and one of their most basic needs. Reduced hours at work and the cancelation of all public events in the coming month’s means the income people were depending on for housing payments is no longer available. Donations made to this area will go to support United Way of the Midlands’ Housing Stability Program. This program will provide rental or mortgage assistance to families that have experienced a sudden decrease in their household income.
Why is utility assistance important?
Everyone should feel safe and comfortable in their home, especially in times of emergency. Providing utility assistance will ensure families can follow health experts’ guidance to practice social distancing and stay home without fear of not being able to heat their home and keep the lights on. Donations made to this area will go to United Way of the Midlands’ 211 Helpline to assist callers that are unable to pay their utility bill.