weather icon Clear

Express Notification expands COVID Trace app’s capabilities

The Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public and Behavioral Health is expanding the capabilities of the COVID Trace app by launching Exposure Notification Express through a partnership with Apple and Google.

Nevada is the first jurisdiction to launch both ENX and have an application using the technology. ENX will be available starting Thursday, Dec. 10, in all Apple devices, and COVID Trace will continue to be available in both the iOS App Store and Android’s Google Play Store.

Nevadans can opt in to receive COVID-19 notifications informing them if they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for the virus. ENX and COVID Trace both use the Bluetooth-based technology, Exposure Notification, developed by Apple and Google to aid in slowing the spread of COVID-19. The two systems work together, and users that opt in to ENX will build on the current users of COVID Trace.

“We have worked hard to develop innovative approaches to combat the virus that causes COVID-19,” said Julia Peek, deputy administrator for the division overseeing contact tracing in Nevada. “These tools are an additional piece of our response aimed at keeping Nevadans safe and healthy through this pandemic. The addition of Exposure Notification Express opens this functionality up to even more Nevadans. The process continues to be completely anonymous, private and secure.”

Starting Dec. 10, users can enable ENX in their iPhone settings on iOS devices. Devices using iOS 13.7 and later can enable the capability to inform people of potential exposure to COVID-19. Nevadans may start receiving availability alerts from their phones the same day.

When individuals voluntarily activate ENX, the tool uses Bluetooth technology to exchange random codes between phones without revealing the user’s identity or location. If an ENX or COVID Trace user tests positive for COVID-19, they will receive a verification code from a disease investigator to plug into the app, if they choose. Any other users who have been within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more of the COVID-19 positive individual will get an anonymous notification of possible exposure.

These tools accelerate how quickly people are notified of a possible COVID-19 exposure, giving individuals the information needed to make responsible decisions around quarantine and testing.

“When combined with other actions like wearing masks and physical distancing, COVID Trace and ENX can help prevent the transmission of COVID-19,” said Dr. Ihsan Azzam, Nevada’s chief medical officer. “The sooner people know they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, the sooner they can take action to prevent the further spread of the virus. These tools are just another way Nevadans can take ownership of their role in keeping loved ones and community safe.”

The COVID Trace app currently has more than 130,000 downloads. Using COVID Trace and ENX is voluntary and free. These tools were developed with privacy and security at their foundation, and the division is dedicated to ensuring the system keeps all users anonymous. It does not use device location to detect exposures and does not share your identity with other users.

For more information, please visit nvhealthresponse.nv.gov/covidtrace/

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Death Valley visitation fell to 820,000 in 2020

Death Valley National Park announced visitation fell to 820,000 people 2020, about half the number of people that visited the park the previous year.

Rally against desert solar projects planned for Saturday

Basin and Range Watch, a nonprofit organization with the slogan “Defending the Desert,” will hold a live and virtual gathering Saturday to bring attention to large-scale solar projects planned for California and Nevada.

California lottery

No one matched all five numbers and the mega number in the Wednesday, Feb. 24 drawing of the California Super Lotto. The next jackpot will be at least $24 million.

Outdoor recreation survey to help shape future projects in Nevada

What should the future of outdoor recreation look like in Nevada? What should dollars earmarked for the purpose be put toward? What kind of projects do Nevadans want to see over the course of the next few years?

Tonopah Liquor Co., where everybody knows your name

Tiffany and Marc Grigory were reminded of what kind of town their Tonopah Liquor Company serves when they were forced to close the venerable bar during the pandemic.

Pahrump Rotarians provide books to local school children

An ongoing program to increase literacy rates among area elementary school children has returned, courtesy of the Pahrump Valley Rotary Club.

Two-vehicle crash jams traffic along Highways 160, 372

No serious injuries were reported following a two-vehicle collision along southbound Highway 160, just before 12:30 p.m., on Monday, Feb. 22nd.

Credit union offering free financial education

In an effort to help youth become financially savvy, America First Credit Union is launching FUNDamentals, a customizable, financial literacy program created for kindergarten through 12th grade students and teachers.

Nye County 4-H robotics team earns prestigious awards

Awkward Silence, Southern Nye County 4-H’s competitive robotics team, took home two first-place awards at the first ever virtual FIRST Tech Challenge Southern Nevada League Championship competition this week.

HOPE Run retaining virtual format for 2021

With spring just a few weeks away and temperatures beginning to warm in the Pahrump Valley, residents’ minds are undoubtedly turning to the delights of the outdoors and what better way to get out and get active than with the NyE Communities Coalition’s annual HOPE Run?