9:18 p.m. | March 31, 2020
By Danna O'Connor
Washoe Co. COVID-19 Cases Reach 143
The Regional Information Center is reporting Tuesday that there are 22 new cases of COVID-19 in Washoe County.
- Total COVID-19 cases in Washoe County: 143
- Deaths: 3
- Recoveries: 13
- Active cases: 127
- Resident hospitalizations: 20
Sisolak Issues Travel Advisory For Visitors, Residents To Self-quarantine
Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak is issuing a travel advisory urging visitors and residents returning to Nevada to self-quarantine.
The governor's new advisory urges visitors and Nevadans returning from travel to self-quarantine for 14 days to help contain the spread of the virus.
He said they should not visit public places or come into contact with anyone outside their household.
Sisolak also encouraged Nevadans to avoid non-essential travel, especially to places where the CDC has issued travel advisories.
The advisory does not apply to essential employees in health care, public health, public safety, transportation and food supply.
Three COVID-19 Cases Confirmed For Local First Responders
A Truckee Meadows firefighter has tested positive for COVID-19. The Regional Information Center reports he is experiencing mild symptoms and is in isolation.
After the quarantine period, he will be re-tested before returning to work. The employee in question had contact with his crew members, and they are also in isolation for 14 days and will be tested if they become symptomatic.
Reno Police Chief Jason Soto confirmed Tuesday that two additional Reno Police Department personnel have tested positive for COVID-19.
The department is working with the Washoe County Health District to identify and contact all persons who may have come into contact with the two employees.
Reno Business License Renewal Deadline Extended
The City of Reno is extending the deadline for business license renewals.
It's an effort to provide relief for businesses that are closed because of an emergency directive from Governor Steve Sisolak. He shut down non-essential businesses in an effort to control the COVID-19 virus.
The deadline for any business license fees due between March 27 and April 30 may be extended 30 days.
Any business that has been unable to pay fees due to the COVID-19 emergency may request an extension on a case-by-case basis.
You can find details here.
4:13 p.m. | March 31, 2020
By Danna O'Connor
Nevada Statewide Death Toll Grows
The Southern Nevada Health District reported eight new deaths on its online dashboard Tuesday due to the COVID-19 virus.
With three deaths in Washoe County reported Monday, that brings the statewide total to 26 deaths.
Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Reports First Positive COVID-19 Case
The Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe said a Sutcliffe resident has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.
The person has underlying conditions and is now hospitalized.
Tribal leaders are recommending residents shelter in place in the following communities: Sutcliffe, Wadsworth and Nixon, and to practice social distancing if you are out of your home for essential activities.
The tribal shelter-in-place request will be in effect until April 10.
Las Vegas Grapples With Protecting Houseless
Houseless people in Las Vegas have been directed to sleep in rectangles painted on the pavement in a makeshift parking lot camp as a way to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.
It's a move that is stirring outrage by some on social media.
Former Obama administration housing chief Julián Castro suggested in a post on Twitter that the city's homeless should be temporarily placed in empty hotel rooms.
Officials opened part of a parking lot as a makeshift homeless shelter after a shelter closed when a man staying there tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
Officials said they decided to temporarily place the homeless in the parking lot of a multi-use facility, rather than inside, because officials planned to reserve the space for potential hospital overflow.
Douglas Co. Reports New COVID-19 Case
Carson City Health and Human Services (CCHHS) is reporting one new positive case of COVID-19 in the Quad County region: Carson City, Douglas, Lyon and Storey counties.
This brings the total number of cases in that area to 12.
The new case is a female Douglas County resident in her 50’s. She is self-isolating in her home.
Carson City Health and Human Services is working to identify close contacts to prevent further spread of the disease.
Sen. Rosen Launches Online Resource Portal
Nevada U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen is launching an online resource portal to assist small businesses affected by the novel coronavirus pandemic.
KRNV News 4 reports the site will help businesses navigate federal assistance programs, including loan and grant programs passed into law as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (or CARES) Act.
Rosen said helping small businesses now will help protect the health of Nevada's economy in the long run.
Rosen is a member of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee. You can find the portal at rosen.senate.gov.
10:23 p.m. | March 30, 2020
By Stephanie Serrano
Local Officials Urge Nevadans To Stay Home
The Regional Information Center is reporting two new deaths due to COVID-19 in Washoe County; a woman in her 30’s and a woman in her 80’s. Both women had underlying health conditions.
Local officials also gathered Monday in response to Washoe County’s first identified COVID-19-related death, which was announced over the weekend. Bruce McAllister was in his 40's and the Reno Gazette-Journal is reporting that the local husband and father had an underlying health condition.
Bob Lucey, the chairman of the Washoe County Commission, started off the press conference by sharing his condolences to the family and loved ones who are currently suffering from their loss.
He also is urging Nevadans to stay home.
“Now, more than ever, we have to help stop the spread of COVID-19; we are beyond inconvenience. This threat is real and this threat continues to grow. If you didn’t think you needed to stay home before, let me be clear: You need to stay home, and stay home for Nevada. You've heard it before but it bears repeating: People's lives are at stake and people are now dying,” said Lucey.
Statewide, Nevada has topped more than 1,000 identified positive COVID-19 cases and as of Monday, Washoe County has reached 121 identified cases, including ten people who have recovered from the disease.
Local Newsrooms Continue To See Effects Of The Growing Pandemic
Gannett has announced that the company is issuing furloughs and other cost reductions after being impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, which has caused the loss of significant advertising revenue. This is impacting many newsrooms across the country, including the Reno Gazette-Journal.
Reporters and editors making more than $38,000 annually will have to take an unpaid week off and rotate between staff starting in April.
Nevada Governor Announces New Emergency Operation Plan
Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak announced that both the Nevada Division of Emergency Management and the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services will temporarily align with the Nevada Office of the Military.
According to Sisolak, this move will ensure that the state is utilizing all of Nevada's government resources in order to combat the spread of COVID-19. This will allow the military to coordinate with different state agencies and report directly to the governor.
Sisolak has not activated the Nevada National Guard in response to COVID-19.
The First Houseless Person Has Tested Positive For COVID-19
A houseless individual in Reno has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
According to a Homeless Services Division, created under the Washoe County COVID-19 Incident Management Team, this is the first identified COVID-19 case among those experiencing homelessness in the region. The person has been released from the hospital and placed in quarantine housing.
The individual had previously accessed services at the Community Assistance Center and the Reno Events Center. All service providers have been notified. Staff are continuing to screen and isolate people with symptoms until alternative housing can be offered.
WCSD To Start Distance Learning Plan Wednesday
One million pages of school work materials were printed by Washoe County School District print shop employees. Starting Wednesday, the Washoe County School District will deploy its distance learning system, amid statewide school closures meant to help stop the spread of COVID-19 in order to “flatten the curve.”
Families who have access to the Internet will have access to the school materials online. Families who do not have access to the Internet may pickup paper packets at a variety of district sites.
According to the district, staff will be checking in with students and families on a weekly basis.
The Age Group Of 50-59 Has Most COVID-19 Positive Test Results In Nevada
In Nevada, the age group with the highest COVID-19 positive test results is between 50 and 59.
The Nevada Department of Health and Human Services is reporting, as of Monday, more than 11,000 people have received COVID-19 tests statewide. And the state has surpassed the milestone of having more than 1,000 positive cases.
Based on the most recent demographic data from the state, 20% of those positive cases are among people between the ages of 50 and 59. The demographic of people between the ages of 30 to 39 follows closely behind, with that age group comprising 19% of the positive test results.
10:39 p.m. | March 29, 2020
By Michelle Billman
Cases Statewide Top 900 Sunday
Across Nevada, there are now 920 positive cases of COVID-19, including the first case in White Pine County, which was announced by health officials there Sunday.
More Information on First COVID-19 Death in Washoe
The first COVID-19 death in Washoe County was announced Sunday. This brings the statewide total deaths to 15.
The death in Washoe was a male in his 40's.
At a press conference, Washoe County Health District Health Officer Kevin Dick said the man had recent travels to New York City. He was diagnosed on March 23 and was hospitalized. It’s unknown if he had underlying health conditions.
“And on behalf of the health district and our community, we offer our condolences to this family for their loss and this tragedy for our community,” Dick said.
Health officials have reached out to close contacts of the individual and they’re self-isolating at home. With more new cases reported in the county over the weekend, the region has not experienced a plateau of COVID-19.
“And so that means we are not flattening the curve, and our first COVID-19 death and these increasing number of cases need to be a call to action for everybody in our community to redouble their efforts,” Dick implored, “to take social distancing measures, to wash your hands, to clean surfaces, to not go to work, when people are sick. This is a very real threat to our community and I think it's time for everyone to take it seriously.”
Dick said he’s also concerned that people are still engaging in risky behaviors.
“I can tell you that I've been quite disturbed with what I've heard from some of our case investigations of people that have been diagnosed with COVID-19 in our community that were out shopping, while they had symptoms, who had gone to work when they had symptoms.”
He said there have also been reports of employers asking sick employees to show up at work, which goes against public health recommendations.
As of Sunday, there were 14 hospitalized cases in the county. Dick said some medical professionals in the community have also tested positive, but he indicated he didn’t know how many.
How Medical Personnel Can Volunteer in Washoe Co.
This information is from a March 28 press release from the Regional Information Center:
Medical personnel and medical students who want to volunteer to support the COVID-19 response should email their interest to WCHDvolunteerscovid19@gmail.com. Volunteers may not be needed immediately. The Washoe County Health District is compiling a contact list should the need arise.
Washoe Co. has Supplies to Distribute to Seniors
This information is from a March 28 press release from the Regional Information Center:
Thanks to the generosity of our community, the Stuff A Bus event on Friday was an overwhelming success. If you are a senior or know a senior that can use essential supplies in the Reno/Sparks area, leave a message at (775) 393-4166 or by email at StuffABus@reno.gov. Delivery of supplies will begin during the week of March 30th until gone.
2:19 p.m. | March 29, 2020
By Michelle Billman
First COVID-19 Death in Washoe Co.
Washoe Co. is reporting the first death there due to COVID-19, according to a statement released by the Regional Information Center on Sunday.
The case was a male in his 40’s. It is not known if he had underlying health conditions.
“We’re devastated to learn that a Washoe County resident has died due to COVID-19,” said Kevin Dick, District Health Officer for Washoe County. “Our thoughts are with the family at this time.”
The district also announced 14 new cases, so there are a total of 107 cases of COVID-19 in Washoe Co. There have been eight recoveries, so the number of active cases in 99.
The COVID-19 Incident Management Team is continuing to instruct residents to practice: social distancing, proper hand washing with soap for 20 seconds, staying home when you are sick, self-isolation for 14 days if you have traveled out of the area and limiting contact with people outside your home, especially with those who have symptoms of cough, fever and shortness of breath.
Reno Police Officer Tests Positive
A member of sworn personnel assigned to the patrol section of the Reno Police Department has tested positive for COVID-19, according to Reno Police Department Chief Jason Soto.
On March 21, the employee began having symptoms of coronavirus and immediately contacted the health district and started home quarantine. Saturday, the Reno Police Department learned that the employee’s COVID-19 test came back positive. RPD is working with the Washoe County Health District by providing information about all of the people who may have come into contact with this employee.
RPD will continue an employee screening policy that it implemented last week, along with continuing to utilize remote work when possible and practicing increased sanitation efforts throughout the department.
11:55 p.m. | March 28, 2020
By Michelle Billman
Nevada COVID-19 Cases Top 700
There are now 738 positive cases of COVID-19 in Nevada, according to an update on Saturday evening to the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services online dashboard. There were four additional deaths announced Saturday, bringing the state total to 14 deaths, all of which occurred in Clark County. More than 9,000 people in Nevada have been tested.
18 New Washoe Co. Cases, including Detention Facility Deputy
There are 18 new positive cases of COVID-19 in Washoe County, bringing the total number of cases in that county to 93 and the number of active cases to 86. Seven people in Washoe County have recovered from the disease at this point.
Washoe County Sheriff Darin Balaam is reporting that a deputy at the Sheriff’s Office Detention Facility is among those who have tested positive. The deputy had been off of work for a week and had returned briefly Thursday before reporting a symptom of coronavirus, at which point the deputy was sent to a testing facility. The sheriff’s office is working with the Washoe County Health District to investigate the case.
The sheriff has also instructed his staff to begin single point entry for the facility and to screen all employees and visitors by taking their temperature and asking basic screening questions before admittance. Read the full press release here.
Korean War Veteran in Southern Nevada Dies from COVID-19 Complications
A resident of the Southern Nevada State Veterans Home has died due to complications related to COVID-19. The Nevada Department of Veterans Services made the announcement Saturday that they are mourning the passing of an 86-year-old male resident who was a Navy Korean War veteran. The department's director, Katherine Miller, said in a statement that the veteran "served our nation with honor and dignity in its hour of need." That statement and other updates can be found on the department’s Facebook page.
For privacy, the department will not be releasing the man's name. He died Saturday after being admitted to the hospital and testing positive for COVID-19.
On Friday, the department also announced that three residents of the Southern Nevada State Veterans Home tested positive for coronavirus and explained that all three are in isolation. They will be cared for by staff members “who have been following established infection disease prevention protocol and public health guidelines.”
3:51 p.m. | March 28, 2020
By Michelle Billman
COVID-19 Death Toll in Nevada at 14
Four more people in Southern Nevada have died from COVID-19, bringing the death toll to 14 in Nevada, with all of those deaths occurring in Clark County.
The statewide total of cases is more than 600, and more than 500 of those cases are in Clark County.
10 of the 14 people in Nevada who have died had underlying conditions, including diabetes and hypertension.
The Southern Nevada Health District is providing updates on its coronavirus dashboard.
2 New Cases in ‘Quad-County Region’
There have been two new positive cases of COVID-19 in the Quad-County Region, which includes Carson City, along with Douglas, Lyon and Storey Counties.
The Carson City Health and Human Services (CCHHS) is reporting that the current total number of cases in the Quad-County region is 11. The two new cases include a Carson City resident in her 30’s with recent travel history and a Douglas County resident in his 30’s with recent travel history.
All cases in this particular region are self-isolating and in stable condition. CCHHS is identifying close risk contacts to prevent further spread.
CCHHS is providing updates here and has a COVID-19 hotline that is staffed Monday-Friday from 8 am to 5 pm, along with Saturday and Sunday from 8 am to 4:30 pm. Spanish speakers are available and the number is 775-283-4789.
Cases Statewide Reach 621
The Nevada State Department of Health and Human Services reported a total of 621 cases of the novel coronavirus across Nevada late Friday.
The number of deaths is 10 and all of those have occurred in Clark County.
More than 8,500 people have been tested.
Washoe County COVID-19 Cases Rise to 75
Officials from Washoe County confirmed eight more known COVID-19 cases Friday afternoon, with one added recovery. This brings the total of Washoe recoveries to five and the total number of cases to 75.
County officials are reminding residents to maintain social distancing guidelines, like staying at least six feet away from others while visiting public places and essential businesses.
South Lake Tahoe Officials Hand out $1,000 Fines to 'Stay at Home' Violators
Anybody in South Lake Tahoe seen violating California Governor Gavin Newsom’s “stay at home” order will be receiving a $1,000 fine per day, each day.
This comes as a result of an emergency order by the city council, issued Friday morning.
This city order is encouraging “strict enforcement” of a directive issued earlier this week for El Dorado County, asking county residents to stay home and close all non-essential businesses, including hotels, short-term rentals and campgrounds.
County documents say all residents can only leave for essential activities, but must stay six feet from other individuals along with frequently and thoroughly washing their hands.
City officials say each violation will constitute a separate offense, and that “people should not expect a warning before receiving a citation.”
UNR Reverses Course, Opts for Spring Graduates to Participate in Later In-Person Commencement
By Benjamin Payne
Students graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno this semester will be able to participate in commencement. It just won't happen this spring.
UNR President Marc Johnson announced Friday that graduates will have two options on when they get to walk: this December or spring of next year. UNR students graduating this spring can choose either one.
Earlier this week, the university canceled its upcoming May commencement in light of COVID-19 and said it would instead hold a virtual ceremony, which family and friends could stream online.
That plan drew intense opposition, including an online petition signed by more than 16,000 people. It urged for a postponed in-person ceremony rather than an online one.
UNR President Marc Johnson acknowledged the pushback in an email to students that announced the two new ceremonies.
Exact dates have not been announced, but Johnson says they will be separate from the already scheduled ceremonies for future graduates.
Get Caught Up:
- March 26 | Nevada Updates
- Nevada Cases Surpass 500
- Washoe Health Officer Says Federal Supply Of PPE Is “Almost Completely Lacking”
- Washoe Schools Prepare For Distance Learning
- Tens Of Thousands Of Nevadans File For Unemployment
For continued updates on the coronavirus in Nevada, visit our updates and resources page.