Coronavirus In Nevada: March 19-20

Coronavirus In Nevada Updates: Friday, March 20

7:55 p.m. PDT | March 20, 2020
By Bree Zender

Positive COVID-19 Cases Now Top More Than 150 In Nevada

Positive COVID-19 testing numbers jumped Friday evening to more than 150 throughout Nevada. In Clark County alone, there are 126 known cases at the moment and two people have died.

Of the cases, one is a University of Nevada, Reno student who recently studied abroad. They traveled directly home, rather than to campus, on the way back from abroad.

In addition, Washoe County announced that one of its positive cases has reached full recovery. Two are being hospitalized at the moment.

Governor Steve Sisolak signed an emergency directive order to close all "non-essential" businesses. This is a change from his announcement this week, which asked non-essential businesses to close, rather than ordering.

Second Nevadan Dies From COVID-19 Related Causes

The Southern Nevada Health District has reported the second COVID-19-related death in the state.

The district said the individual was a woman in her 60's with underlying health conditions in Clark County. The first death, also in Clark County, was reported March 16.

Carson City Reports Second Positive COVID-19 Case

Carson City Health and Human Services has reported another positive case of COVID-19 in the city.

The patient is a man in his 70's, is in stable condition and is self-isolating at his home. The man was a close contact with another person who had been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Carson City now has two cases of the virus.

UNR Reverses Decision, Now Will Give Students Refunds For Moving Out

The University of Nevada, Reno has changed its decision to not refund housing fees for students who were asked to leave on-campus housing.

UNR will now offer a prorated refund to all students who are leaving their dorms. The refunds are slated to be issued within 14 days.

Some students with extenuating circumstances can remain in on-campus housing. This includes international students, and students who are homeless, in foster situations, or from areas where travel has been ordered to cease.

Those students will pay for their housing and meal plans.

Becoming Unemployed In Just Hours

3:04 p.m. PDT | March 20, 2020
By Stephanie Serrano

Many Nevadans working in the service industry, who have the opportunity to file for unemployment, are currently in the process of doing so after the mandated statewide closure of all non-essential businesses for 30 days. KUNR’s Stephanie Serrano spoke to two Reno locals who have been impacted.

Read more from this article.

Critical Shortages Strain COVID-19 Response

11:53 a.m. PDT | March 20, 2020
By Anh Gray

Governor Steve Sisolak announced the statewide closures of schools, casinos and non-essential businesses to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. The move is to save lives and to prevent the health care system from being inundated. However, the lack of crucial resources, including protective masks, tests and even providers, is already straining the system.

Dr. Jenny Wilson has been an emergency room doctor for more than two decades. She practices at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center and is the medical director of the Reno Emergency Physicians Association.

As the number of COVID-19 cases increase statewide, and in Washoe County, she’s worried about the lack of personal protective equipment that helps prevent infections for doctors and patients.

Read more from this article.

Coronavirus In Nevada Updates: Thursday, March 19

8:25 p.m. PDT | March 19, 2020
By Paul Boger

96 Cases Of COVID-19 In Nevada

Health officials said four more people in Washoe County have tested presumptive positive for the novel coronavirus, bringing the county's total to 18.

Across the state, the total number of cases has jumped to 96 and now spans across six counties.

In eastern Nevada, Elko County has announced its first presumptive positive case of the virus.

The woman was tested Monday after experiencing symptoms and has since been in self-isolation.

State officials are working to track the woman’s contacts and monitor her condition at home.

In Southern Nevada, health officials said a person associated with a public magnet school in North Las Vegas has tested positive for the disease.

Health officials are also reporting a case of COVID-19 at Nellis Air Force Base, outside Las Vegas, where a NATO service member stationed at the base has tested positive.

One death has so far been reported in Nevada.

In California, Governor Gavin Newsom issued a statewide "shelter-in-place" order that went into effect Thursday night.

He said that the statewide restriction on any non-essential movement outside the home is needed to control the spread of the coronavirus that threatens to overwhelm the state's medical system.

According to the most recent data available, there are currently 10 cases in the Eastern Sierra — nine in Placer County and one in Nevada County.

Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak has issued an executive order allowing casino resorts to stay open if they are doing it to avoid guest displacement or for “essential or emergency purposes.”

According to The Nevada Independent, the executive order enshrines some of the statements Sisolak made on Tuesday when he called for “non-essential” businesses to close in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus.

Many casinos had voluntarily closed their doors in advance of the declaration.

The order, signed Thursday, is effective until April 16.

UNR Students Must Leave Dorms By March 25

The University of Nevada, Reno said all students must move out of the school's eight residence halls by March 25, but without refunds for the shortened semester.

The move comes days after a declaration from Governor Steve Sisolak that all non-essential operations should close amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

UNR announced last week that it would stop in-person instruction after spring break and would move all classes online.

In a statement, the university said that residents remain financially responsible for their housing assignments, even if they are off-campus, adding that operating expenses for the building must continue to be paid, even if most students have moved out.

Students may be able to receive up to 50% of their money back for their university parking permits, however, so long as the permit is mailed back to UNR by April 5.

The university has since issued a clarification saying some students may be eligible to remain on campus if they have nowhere else to go or cannot afford transportation.

Reno Court Suspends Evictions

The Reno Justice Court has issued an order delaying all evictions during the current coronavirus pandemic.

The order issued yesterday by Chief Justice of the Peace Ryan Sullivan comes after housing advocates pushed the court to suspend the practice.

It also specifies that deadlines and default provisions in state eviction law are suspended and that tenants who do not show up for court will not be locked out of their homes during this suspension.

The judge's order also requires any in-custody court proceedings to be carried out by either videoconference or telephone and bars anyone but attorneys from the lobby or courtrooms.

The Sparks Justice Court issued a similar order on Wednesday, suspending default evictions for at least 30 days.

Reno Businesses React To Statewide Closure: Creative Solutions, Voluntary Closures, Unemployment

5:05 p.m. PDT | March 19, 2020
By Stephanie Serrano

As coronavirus social distancing continues to be encouraged in Nevada by local and state officials, a mandatory 30-day closure of non-essential businesses statewide has been issued by Governor Steve Sisolak.

Unprecedented changes and new public gathering restrictions have left small business owners questioning their future.

Restrictions include statewide closures of all non-essential businesses, forcing beauty shops, gyms, bars, casinos and restaurants to close.

Read more from this article.

Coronavirus Response Leading To Blood Supply Shortage

1:38 p.m. PDT | March 19, 2020
By Anh Gray

As businesses and schools close in response to the coronavirus pandemic, an unintended consequence is the cancelation of blood drives scheduled at those locations.

Scott Edwards is with Vitalant, a blood bank in Northern Nevada. He said that as people are staying home and social distancing, there have been fewer people coming to the blood bank to donate blood. And that’s not the only decline.

“Half of our collections come from community blood drives that we have at businesses or schools or churches throughout Northern Nevada,” Edwards said. “We've had over 25 of our blood drives had to cancel and another 15 are at risk.”

Edwards said he’s worried that the supply of blood may not meet the demand in the community.

“There [are] cancer patients, for example. They need a variety of blood components to continue their treatment. So you can't just decide, well, wait till it's over and then start treatment again,” Edwards explained. “There are surgeries that have to go on, they can't be postponed. And then unfortunately, you have accidents, car accidents, as people [are] still going to be at risk of major accidents. So all of those scenarios.”

Edwards said Vitalant is struggling to maintain a stable inventory and he’s anticipating more than a 30% decline of blood collection for the next several weeks. The nation is facing what the American Red Cross considers a “severe blood shortage” and is urging healthy residents to make donations.

Get Caught Up:

  • March 18 | Nevada Updates
    • State Total Of COVID-19 Cases Hits 85
    • UNR Shuts Down All Non-Essential Operations, Closes To Public
    • Washoe, Reno Law Enforcement Stepping Up Patrols
    • Washoe Co. Changes Business Operations
    • Reno News And Review Suspends Publication
    • All TMCC Physical Locations Are Closed
    • Gov. Sisolak Waives Work Search Requirement for Unemployment Insurance Benefits
    • City Of Reno Provides More Details On Reno Business Closures
    • Foreclosures And Evictions Suspended For Vast Majority Of Nevada Homeowners
  • March 18 | Gov. Sisolak Shutters All Non-Essential Businesses In Nevada

For continued updates on Coronavirus in Nevada, visit our updates and resources page.