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Hospitalizations remain high as Lancaster County adds 88 COVID-19 cases
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Hospitalizations remain high as Lancaster County adds 88 COVID-19 cases

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Coronavirus hospitalizations in Lincoln remained high Wednesday, when Lancaster County reported 88 new coronavirus cases but no new deaths. 

The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department has confirmed 5,938 COVID-19 cases since the pandemic began and documented 2,216 recoveries, according to its data dashboard.

The local death toll remains at 24.

In total, 53 patients with COVID-19 received care at Lincoln hospitals Wednesday, including 23 from Lancaster County.

Health department officials attribute the high number of hospitalizations to continued community spread of the coronavirus and the continued need for Lincoln's hospitals to care for out-of-county residents with COVID-19, including residents relocated from senior living facilities where outbreaks have been reported.

Statewide, the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 reached 200 on Wednesday, the highest number since June 3.

Hospital capacity, however, is not jeopardized, with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services reporting 34% of the state's hospital beds available and only 20% of ventilators in use.

The positivity rate for tests statewide is at its highest level since early June, with 9.6% of tests this week coming back positive.

With 493 new cases reported Wednesday, state totals number 42,278 cases, with 31,383 recoveries and 462 deaths.

Lincoln Public Schools reported six positive cases, at Culler and Goodrich middle schools and Everett, Riley, West Lincoln and Zeman elementary schools. On Tuesday, the district reported three positive cases, at Scott Middle School and Lincoln North Star and Lincoln Southeast high schools. 

In the last week, LPS reported 33 positive cases. 

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln reported six new positive cases Wednesday — the second straight day of single-digit cases — for a total of 739 on campus since students returned.

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Photos: Lincoln during the pandemic

Reach the writer at 402-473-2657 or rjohnson@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSRileyJohnson.

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