Clark County: One in Four New COVID-19 Patients Visited Las Vegas Casino or Hotel

Posted on: September 18, 2020, 08:21h. 

Last updated on: September 18, 2020, 09:47h.

Twenty-six percent of new COVID-19 infections in Clark County, Nev. have reportedly been discovered in people who had recently visited a Las Vegas casino or hotel.

COVID-19 Las Vegas Clark County
Twenty-six percent of new COVID-19 patients in Clark County report recently being at a Las Vegas casino or hotel. (Image: Roger Kisby/Getty)

Nevada Department of Health and Human Services Deputy Administrator Julia Peek said 26 percent of people infected in Clark County who participated in contact tracing reported being inside a casino or hotel within the 30 days prior to testing positive. Her remarks came during a COVID-19 Mitigation and Management Task Force meeting this week,

[The data] does not mean that the business is associated with the exposure,” Peet explained. “It just means that the person happened to name it during the case investigation, and more information needs to be obtained through that investigation process.”

Since it’s impossible to pinpoint the exact time and location a person contracted the virus, Peet says the numbers shouldn’t be of immediate alarm to the hospitality industry.

Nevada task force head Caleb Cage summarized Peet’s comments. “If an industry or a company or a location comes up … it doesn’t necessarily mean that a person was infected there. It means that a person had been there at some point before or after the time they started exhibiting symptoms.”

Wynn Resorts announced this week that some 550 employees of their Las Vegas employees have tested COVID-19 positive.

COVID-19 Hub

Though the health officials aren’t sounding the alarms regarding the COVID-19 contact tracing data, the statistics come at a time when Clark County is readying to reopen bar service and table-top gaming.

Bars, pubs, taverns, breweries, distilleries, and wineries can reopen Monday, September 21. The task force and Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) eased those restrictions after Clark County’s positive testing rate dropped 2.6 percent over the last week.

However, Las Vegas has been accused of being a potential coronavirus breeding ground. In August, an analysis of cell phone movement of recent visitors to Southern Nevada found that those same electronic devices pinged in the week after in every state but Maine.

Following stay-at-home orders issued in states across the country this spring and early summer, Americans are once again on the move. That makes contact tracing all the more difficult for health officials.

Nevada Numbers

Since the pandemic struck the Silver State, Nevada has confirmed 74,595 positive COVID-19 test results. The disease has been cited for 1,506 deaths.

Being the most populated county, Clark is responsible for 63,301 of the coronavirus cases, or 85 percent.

Daily new statewide cases have dropped from more than 1,000 a day back in July to less than 500 a day in September.