Just how much Nevada has played a role in spreading Covid-19 has been a topic of great discussion recently. Now after hearing stories of the Wuhan of the Strip and tracking tourists after they spread throughout the country, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has revealed more than 500 Nevadan tourists have tested positive for Covid-19.
To be more specific, atleast 530 visitors to Nevada tested positive for Covid-19 between June 1 and August 15. Their positive results were found either in Nevada, or when they returned home. That’s a nearly 200 persons increase since the last time DHHS released a tally, when only 347 were announced on July 25.
The vast majority of those positive cases tested positive while still in Nevada, with only 11 testing positive once they returned home. However, that count could be higher, as Nevada state officials are only notified of a positive case contact traced to them if the tourists home state bothers to announce it. Arizona, California and Ohio have done that, but the other 46 states may have not.
“My hunch would be that those numbers are low because of reporting issues, not because they’re actually low,” Professor Samuel Scarpino told the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
A contact tracing research study shows that is likely the case. Over a long weekend period, GPS data showed that visitors to Nevada managed to reach 46 of the other 47 continental United States, with only Maine being the exception. If only 3 of those states are sharing contact tracing data with Nevada, the real numbers could be much higher.
And if you believe anonymous employees at the Cosmopolitan, they likely are. Several employees report that costumers aren’t following social distancing rules or other basic safety procedures on the casino floor. Their fears, and public pressure to reveal just how much Covid-19 infection is tied to casino activity, could force Governor Steve Sisolak to reveal which businesses are continuing to spread the virus.