Las Vegas Casinos Top List of COVID-19 Hotspots in Nevada

Cosmopolitan tops the list

Public health officials have released a breakdown of the locations in Southern Nevada that have had the most COVID-19 exposures, with many leading hotel-casinos dominating the list.

Examining a 30-day period in August, the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) points to the Cosmopolitan as the location with the most virus exposures with 304.

the Clark County Detention Center was the top-ranked non-casino location

The Bellagio was next on the list with 153 exposures, followed by the MGM Grand Hotel with 133, The Venetian with 89, and Caesars Palace with 86 exposures. The Clark County Detention Center was the top-ranked non-casino location, slotted in the sixth spot with 82 cases.

General community spread

The investigators did note that the data only reflects a portion of the total people who tested positive for the virus in the region. A DHHS spokeswoman said: “Every case is contacted, but individuals do have the option to not participate in the interview and the data on location is self-reported by the cases.”

She went on to say that the figures are more of a reflection of general community spread rather than a specific issue with the employer or business.

A statement released by the Southern Nevada Health District on Friday reiterates that the information in the report does not identify the exact locations where there are COVID-19 clusters or where people were initially exposed to the virus.

does not describe where or when someone contracted COVID-19”

The USA TODAY Network spoke to The Cosmopolitan about the high number of exposures at the hotel-casino. In response, management underlined its commitment to keeping workers and guests as safe as possible and reiterated that the data “does not describe where or when someone contracted COVID-19, but merely what locations they visited during a certain period of time”.

Employees testing positive

Since Nevada casinos were able to reopen on June 4 following forced pandemic shutdowns, extensive health and safety precautions have been in place. Such measures include casinos operating at reduced capacity and requiring all patrons and workers to wear masks in public areas.

Many casinos conduct regular tests and checks on their employees to make sure that they are not carrying the virus into the workplace.

On Friday, Las Vegas Sands revealed that nearly 400 employees in its Palazzo and Venetian resorts in Las Vegas have tested positive for COVID-19 since reopening in June. Sands has completed 42,637 COVID-19 tests to date, resulting in 399 positive tests. Some of these positive tests were conducted at off-property locations.

The Wynn Las Vegas has had nearly 500 positive tests, with three employees dying as a result of the virus since reopening in June. The hotel-casino has carried out over 15,000 tests to date, with 497 tests coming back positive. The company has hosted over 500,000 guests since reopening, with just six of them testing positive.

Hotel hotspots

The COVID-19 Mitigation and Management Task Force in Nevada detailed recently that more than a quarter of the people who contracted COVID-19 in Clark County (the home of the Las Vegas Strip) may have either contracted or helped to spread the virus at a hotel, resort, or motel.

26% of them had visited a hotel, resort, or motel

Of the people who have been a part of contact tracing investigations in Clark County over a recent 30-day period, 26% of them had visited a hotel, resort, or motel. In 12% of cases, they had visited food establishments such as grocery stores or restaurants.

Visitor numbers to the region have been picking up gradually since casinos began reopening in June. To date, there have been nearly 76,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Nevada, with 1,532 deaths.

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