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Sisolak announces end to COVID-19 state of emergency

Nevada’s COVID-19 pandemic state of emergency will soon be no more.

Gov. Steve Sisolak announced Friday that he plans to end the state of emergency related to the COVID-19 pandemic on May 20, more than two years after he issued the emergency declaration.

The governor declared the emergency on March 12 in response to the pandemic when the state had detected just 11 total positive cases of COVID-19. That order granted the governor the authority to take extraordinary measures to combat the virus, from closing businesses to easing licensing requirements for some health care workers.

“The COVID-19 pandemic tried and tested our State on every level,” the governor said in his statement included with the announcement. “By working together across all levels of government and in every corner of the State, we prevented our healthcare system from becoming overwhelmed and continued to provide services to Nevadans in need.”

The announcement from the governor’s office said that they are using the two weeks before the emergency declaration’s intended end date to work with those groups using certain flexibilities granted under the various orders, such as those that eased licensing requirements for some health care workers, in order to ensure that there are no service gaps when it ends.

The COVID-19 spikes that previously filled hospitals across the state appear to have subsided. Nevada has exited the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “high rate of transmission” classification after a winter surge of cases and hospitalizations caused by the highly contagious omicron variant.

Since peaking in January, cases declined sharply across the state, which led Sisolak to rescind the state’s mask mandate on Feb. 10.

Nevada’s 14-day rolling average of new COVID-19 cases reported on Monday was 267, compared to more than 6,800 at its peak on Jan. 15, according to data reported by the state. Major COVID-19 metrics have started to tick upwards in recent weeks, however.

“I am so grateful to all the Nevadans who worked through these trying times in service of the Silver State,” Sisolak’s statement said.

Contact Colton Lochhead at clochhead@reviewjournal.com. Follow @ColtonLochhead on Twitter.

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