Nevada Public Health Professionals Monitoring Coronavirus | KUNR

Nevada Public Health Professionals Monitoring Coronavirus

Feb 20, 2020

In Nevada, there have been no cases of the coronavirus, but in California there have been eight confirmed cases. Public health officials in the Silver State are closely monitoring the outbreak.

The coronavirus, a respiratory illness which originated in Wuhan, China, has slowly surfaced in the United States. The U.S. has confirmed 15 cases, and more than half of those are in California. 

Dr. Mark Pandori is the director of the Nevada State Public Health Laboratory. He said they are prepared if there were to be an outbreak in the state, and are actively gathering information from California.

“We’re monitoring the situation. We're getting ready to ... use the information from California to do whatever we can to protect the citizens of Nevada. So concerned yes, worried not really," Pandori said. "These are a limited number of cases, and right now, I think we all have to be pretty impressed with the public health reaction to this.”

There are now lab tests developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention available to test for the virus. 

“It only took a few days for CDC to send it out to us here in Nevada, and we were actually one of the first nine states to get the test up and running.”

Worldwide, the coronavirus has caused alarm. Pandori added that the best way to avoid misinformation about the virus is to rely on credible sources, like public health departments and other governmental agencies, or peer reviewed scientific literature.

Lesly Virgen-Mariscal is a bilingual student reporter with Noticiero Móvil at the Reynolds School of Journalism.