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Las Vegas Resort Building Its Own COVID Testing Lab For Employees & Guests

by SharonKurheg

Las Vegas has more visitors than it did when it first re-opened a few months ago. However, like everywhere else, it’s nowhere near normal numbers. Many people are not yet comfortable with traveling or being among large groups of people.

One resort is trying to do something about that.

Wynn Resorts is in the midst of building its own on-site rapid COVID-19 testing lab and expects it to be operational by Thanksgiving.

The planned lab, which will be at the Wynn Las Vegas, should have the ability to provide “thousands of accurate rapid tests daily.”  It’s being built in partnership with the University Medical Center (UMC) of Southern Nevada. The goal is for the Wynn to offer FDA-approved polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests that can provide results “in a matter of hours.”

Wynn Resorts CEO Matt Maddox said in an op-ed piece entitled, “A Vision To Accelerate The Last Vegas Comeback,” that this move will help the resort create what he’s calling a “safe zone.”

“Establishing these safe zones by testing thousands of people per day with the PCR test dramatically mitigates the danger of community spread,” said Maddox. “The probability of a contagious COVID carrier entering a safe zone is less than one-tenth of 1%.”

As per Maddox, testing is expected to be required for all employees and any guests planning to attend a show, convention, nightclub or other crowded events.

Says Maddox: “Imagine the following: Lionel Richie is playing at the Encore Theater at 7 p.m. Between 12 p.m. and 4 p.m. that day, you and your friends each provide a saliva sample at our on-property testing centers. The barcodes are scanned and you download the free UMC app and go about your day. All the information is hosted by UMC and the data is private. When the test results come back at 6 p.m., a negative test triggers a green light on the app and you can attend the show. And because the same process will apply, you can also head into a securely populated convention the following morning.”

The governor of Nevada recently approved an increase in large gatherings for events such as conventions.

“Clearly, we will need approval from the state to execute this plan, but having worked closely with leading medical experts around the country, I believe that this approach can accelerate Nevada’s recovery,” said Maddox.

Wynn has been testing up to 700 employees every 2 weeks since reopening in June. Of the over 15k employees they’ve tested, they’ve had a positivity rate of 3.3%.  They’ve also hosted over 500,000 guests since reopening; those who have self-identified with potential exposure or display symptoms of COVID are being offered in-room testing.

Feature Photo: Travel Nevada / Flickr

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

 

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