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Nevada’s Gambling Regulators Prepare For Reopening

A casino in Reno.
Brian Bahouth of the Sierra Nevada Ally
The Nugget Casino and Diner in Reno on May 26, 2020.

The Nevada Gaming Control Board is making final regulatory preparations to reopen casinos as soon as June 4. Our contributor Brian Bahouth with the Sierra Nevada Ally reports. 


On April 29, Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak, under Declaration of Emergency, proclaimed that gaming operations may not resume until the Nevada Gaming Control Board deems it is safe to do so. Tuesday, the Gaming Control Board held a workshop to consider recommendations from public health experts before issuing final reopening guidance to licensees.

Mason Van Houweling is chief executive officer at the University Medical Center in Las Vegas and recommends that guests be screened for body temperature and COVID-19 symptoms upon arrival. If their temperature exceeds 100.4 degrees, the guest will be taken to a designated area where EMS technicians will take vital signs and the guest will consult with a doctor via tele-medicine.

“That medical screening via telehealth will also determine, ‘is this a good candidate for a COVID test,’ and that will help drive the decision-making process to be able to determine if a lab sample collection is indicated by the provider,” Van Houweling said.

If a guest tests positive for COVID-19, hotels in Las Vegas and Reno have been identified as locations where visitors can remain safely quarantined for 14 days under medical supervision. Every casino resort guest should get a COVID-19 Prevention Card written in English, Spanish and Chinese, according to public health officials, who also recommend all guests be issued masks and have to wear them in public spaces.

Additionally, casino employees should be tested every two weeks for the first month and then monthly after that, but before one of the state’s 460 non-restricted gaming licensees can reopen, the Gaming Control Board must approve a detailed reopening plan.

KUNR Contributor Brian Bahouth is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Sierra Nevada Ally. To read more on this topic, visit The Sierra Nevada Ally.

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