Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak said on Thursday July 8th that due to a spike in COVID-19 cases, bars in some Nevada counties, including Washoe and Clark, will need to go back to Phase 1 restrictions, effective Friday, July 10.
Reno is located in Washoe County and Las Vegas is in Clark County.
Sisolak said the decision came after a call on Thursday with representatives from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. They advised him that Nevada needed to take swift action to avoid overwhelming its hospital facilities with COVID-19 patients.
According to the Nevada Hospital Association, 78% of their hospital beds and 50% of their ICU beds are occupied, while 20% of their ventilators are currently in use.
Nevada has recently been experiencing a spike in cases of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. Cases hover around 26,000, over 1000 cases were recently diagnosed in a single day, and they’ve had a death toll reaching towards 600.
Sislak said his decision is based on targeting high-risk areas where there is more chance of infection spreading.
“We know that COVID-19 can easily spread when people are congregating for long periods of time, like inside a bar. In states where we have seen significant spikes, such as Arizona, Texas and Florida, they have all taken actions to roll back bars. Recently, Dr. Fauci, the US’s top infectious-disease expert, advised that congregating in bars poses a significant risk and is one of the most dangerous things people could do right now. We must heed his advice,” said Sislak.
He continued, “Additionally, I am concerned because based on our inspections thus far, fewer than half the bars that OSHA inspectors have visited have been found in compliance.”
The new mandate only applies to bars and taverns that don’t serve food. Although they can’t have patrons on the premises, these bars can still provide curbside pickup and delivery where allowed locally.
Restaurants that have bar areas must be closed off to patrons so they can’t gather there. However patrons, still at 50% capacity, can still order alcohol with their food. In addition, restaurants can no longer serve parties larger than 6 people, either indoors or outdoors.
#stayhealthy #staysafe #washyourhands #wearamask
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary