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Every county except Storey flagged for high COVID risk

Every county in Nevada except Storey County again were flagged for elevated risk of transmission by the COVID-19 Mitigation and Management Task Force, state COVID-19 Response Director Caleb Cage and Julia Peek, deputy administrator of community health services, said Monday at their daily update on the pandemic.

Like most Nevada counties, Nye County was flagged for two of the three criteria used to judge risk levels. Nye topped the minimum of 100 tests per 100,000 people per day with 133 but was above the standard in case rate per 100,000 people (706) and test positivity rate (22.1%).

Lincoln County was the only one flagged for all three criteria, with a 14-day average of 55 tests per 100,000 people, a case rate of 654 per 100,000 and a test positivity rate of 47.5%.

The highest testing rate was in White Pine County at 1,204, while the highest case rate per 100,000 people was Pershing, which had 11,649 cases, far ahead of the next-worst countym which was White Pine at 2,522. The highest test positivity rate is the 47.5% in Lincoln County, with Pershing County right behind at 47.4%.

Every county other than Storey County was above the standard for case rate per 100,000 and test positivity rate, but only Eureka and Lincoln did not meet the criteria for average number of tests per day per 100,000 people.

As of Monday, Nevada has logged 233,032 cases, with the 14-day rolling average of daily cases statewide at 1,680. The state has completed 2,140,442 molecular tests since the beginning of COVID-19, and the test positivity rate over the past 14 days is 20.0%.

The Nevada Hospital Association reports there are currently 1,879 COVID-19 hospitalizations (1,738 confirmed and 141 suspected).

The Joint Information Center launched the Nevada Health Response website redesign process over the weekend and worked hard to ensure the website was functional by Monday morning. There were also updates to the data dashboard.

A key highlight of the new website is a page dedicated to providing Nevadans with the state’s “current status.” The page includes the latest mitigation measures for the state in an easy-to-follow format. Also, there’s a new page dedicated to the State’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts and will help direct Nevadans to the most up-to-date information on the status of the vaccine campaign on www.NVCovidFighter.org.

The Nevada COVID-19 Dashboard has been updated to offer enhanced navigation, increased usability, improved accessibility for users with disabilities and more options to filter county-level data. This is the second update to the dashboard since the previous update went live in October 2020. The dashboard updates were developed by the DHHS Office of Analytics with Microsoft AI for Health to revamp the design of the dashboard, which also allows users to download data.

Cage and Peek said the state is aware there were gatherings on New Year’s Eve. Outside of what has been shown in the news, like every state and country, there were also private gatherings. What is now recommend for Nevadans who were out in large crowds on New Year’s Eve and not following the public health guidance, would be to act as though they may have contracted COVID.

Public health guidance suggests seeking a COVID test between five and seven days after potential exposure, and the Nevada Health Response website maintains a testing locator map. People awaiting test results should quarantine to the maximum extent possible.

Gov. Steve Sisolak, in his last report on the pandemic, read directly from the White House report with recommendations which said “No unmasked public gatherings are safe, and no indoor private gatherings are safe without all members fully masked.”

The Governor has said safety is a partnership, and Nevada is relying on that partnership from the state, local officials, business and the public to make good choices and be responsible.

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