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NEW: COVID-19 cases plunge in Nevada, test positivity decline continues |

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NEW: COVID-19 cases plunge in Nevada, test positivity decline continues

Below is the full COVID-19 report for Oct. 12.

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) -- Nevada's daily count of COVID-19 cases plunged to levels last seen in early July, and the state's test positivity rate continued to drop in data released today.

With 621 new cases reported -- 452 in Clark County -- cases were more in line with levels before the summer spike, when counts were frequently double that number, and sometimes even higher.

Nevada's test positivity rate dropped from 8.2% to 8.1%, a slight drop but a continuing improvement that's worth noting. Clark County's test positivity increased late last week and has been at 7.0% so far this week.

Clark County's share of the total case count was higher: 72%. That's more in line with historic averages over the pandemic.

Of the state's 22 deaths, 20 came from Clark County.

Cases have shifted away from Clark County over the past month of the current COVID-19 spike, but the mask mandate has remained in place statewide. The state is following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance on the mask rule. The mandate will remain in place in each county until the following conditions are met:

  • The COVID-19 test positivity rate must be below 8%
  • The case rate (per 100,000 population over 7 days) must be below 50.

Clark County is currently at 7.0% test positivity and the case rate is at 119.3, according to the Southern Nevada Health District.

Nevada continues to be labeled a place with high COVID-19 transmission and Clark County remains “an area of concern,” according to an updated White House report. The county was first labeled a “sustained hot spot” on July 5.

READ: WHITE HOUSE COVID-19 REPORT FOR OCT. 12Download

Almost all of Nevada is labeled as a “high transmission” area. The CDC is using cases per 100,000 over the past seven days to determine high transmission.

A BREAKDOWN OF CASES, DEATHS AND TESTING

Nevada’s case count grew by 621 in the past day, with 385 in Clark County in the past day. The state’s total cases are now at 429,555. Clark County has a total of 325,872. It’s important to note that the state no longer updates the dashboard on the weekend or holidays, which may be why Monday and Tuesday reports show higher case and death totals.

You can find this data under the “Current Status — Confirmed Cases” tab of the DHHS dashboard

Nevada’s test positivity rate is at 8.1%, down from 8.2% yesterday. It fell below 5.0%, the World Health Organization’s goal, on May 17 and climbed above it on June 28. Clark County’s rate is at 7.0%, unchanged from yesterday.

Of the 22 additional COVID-19-related deaths, 20 were from Clark County. Southern Nevada now accounts for 5,801 of the state’s 7,367 deaths. The 14-day rolling average is 11 deaths per day.

As of Sept. 30, the Southern Nevada Health District reports there are 158 breakthrough deaths, 482 breakthrough hospitalizations and 10,449 breakthrough cases. The county did not give an update last week.

As of yesterday, a total of 5,056,077 COVID-19 tests have been conducted in Nevada, with an increase of 8,989 since yesterday.

*NOTE: Daily lab data from DHHS and SNHD reports is updated every morning for the previous day.

TRACKING NV COUNTIES

The test positivity rate in Clark County has dropped below 8%, which takes the county off the state's watch list for elevated transmission risk. If the county can sustain levels for test positivity and testing, state restrictions -- including mask requirements -- could be relaxed. A separate measure of the county's case rate -- currently 119.3 cases per 100,000 population over the past seven days -- needs to drop below 50 for two straight weeks before the mask mandate can end.

In today’s report, Churchill, Douglas, Elko, Esmeralda, Humboldt, Lander, Lyon, Mineral, Nye and Washoe counties are flagged.

Clark County’s case rate (533 per 100,000 over the past 30 days) is flagged in data reported today. Test positivity rate (7.0%) and testing (355 tests per day per 100,000) are within the state’s acceptable range.

VACCINATION UPDATE

The state’s health department reports 3,181,255 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in Nevada, as of Oct. 12. 

As of today, more than 54% of Nevadans currently eligible for the vaccine are fully vaccinated, and 63% of the eligible population has initiated vaccinations. Clark County reports that 54% of its eligible residents are fully vaccinated.

A BREAKDOWN OF NEVADA HOSPITALIZATIONS

NOTE: The state is not updating hospitalization data on weekends or holidays.

According to the state’s Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), the number of hospitalized patients in Nevada was DOWN (-10) in the past day.

The current number of hospitalizations is 748 confirmed/suspected cases. Hospitals reported 176 of those patients were in intensive care units, and 111 were on ventilators. To give some perspective, the state set a record high for hospitalized patients on Dec. 13 with 2,025 cases.

The Nevada Hospital Association is not filing a weekly COVID update this week. It should return on Oct. 13.

You can find this data under the “Current Status — Hospitalizations” tab of the DHHS dashboard

RECOVERY CASES IN SOUTHERN NEVADA

The number of people who have recovered from the virus in Southern Nevada continues to increase. The latest county update estimates a total of 310,014 recovered cases; that’s 95.1% of all reported cases in the county, according to SNHD’s latest report.

The health district provides a daily map with the number of positive tests in each ZIP code in Clark County.

MITIGATION MEASURES IN NEVADA

Nevada reopened to 100% capacity on June 1 and social distancing guidelines lifted, helping the state return to mostly pre-pandemic times, with some exceptions.

The CDC reversed course on July 27, saying fully vaccinated Americans in areas with “substantial and high” transmission should wear masks indoors when in public as COVID-19 cases rise. Most of Nevada falls into those two risk categories.

Nevada said it would adopt the CDC’s guidance with the new mask guideline that went into effect at 12:01 a.m. on July 30. This overrides Clark County’s employee mask mandate, which went into effect in mid-July.

On Aug. 16, Gov. Sisolak signed a new directive that allows fully vaccinated attendees at large gatherings to remove their masks, but only if the venue chooses to require everyone in attendance to provide proof of vaccination. Those who have just one shot and are not “fully vaccinated” would still be allowed to attend, as would children under 12, but both would need to wear masks.

Masks still must be worn when required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local businesses and workplace guidance.

SEE ALSO: Previous day’s report

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