Updated April 29, 2020 - 9:23 am
CARSON CITY — Gov. Steve Sisolak teased out on Twitter on Tuesday that he would announce a “Roadmap to Recovery” plan for Nevada on Thursday, the day that a series of his directives on social distancing, business closures and other coronavirus-related restrictions are set to expire.
Ahead of that, he announced he would have “big announcements” for the state “every day this week.” The first of those came late Tuesday afternoon, with the governor announcing that hospitals in the state would begin performing medically necessary procedures that had been temporarily stopped amid the rising outbreak.
“I know many of our hospitals, medical practices and dentist offices proactively paused medically necessary services to help flatten the (infection) curve, preserve personal protective equipment and help residents Stay Home for Nevada,” the governor said in a statement. Nevada never enacted firm restrictions “because our responsible communities took it upon themselves,” he said.
A team of medical advisers Sisolak named to help guide policy in response to the outbreak “also supports the phased-in approach to resume limited medical and dental procedures under strict guidelines,” the governor’s announcement said.
Hospitals will move forward on phasing in these procedures based on clinical judgment, established health care guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other regulatory agencies, and the availability of personal protective equipment. Policies must be flexible to respond in the event of another COVID-19 surge.
The Department of Health and Human Services is to release guidelines for phasing in essential dental services that minimize the risk of COVID-19 transmission.
Patients should anticipate new procedures such as pre-appointment screening questions, temperature checks upon arriving at a medical or dental office, closed waiting rooms, and requests to wash hands or use mouth rinse.
As for what’s next for the Nevada, the governor offered no additional details Tuesday.
I will be presenting this plan on Thursday, but there will be many more announcements between now and then. I look forward to this next phase in the battle against COVID19 — one that will be federally supported, state managed, & locally executed
— Governor Sisolak (@GovSisolak) April 28, 2020
“I am able to make announcements this week because so many of you have stayed home for Nevada and helped flatten the curve against #COVID19,” the governor said in a follow-up tweet. And he promised “many more announcements” ahead of his Thursday unveiling.
“I look forward to this next phase in the battle against COVID-19 — one that will be federally supported, state managed, & locally executed,” Sisolak said.
Last week, Sisolak announced at a news conference that the state would begin a phased-in recovery, but only after medical metrics indicated a downward trend in coronavirus cases. He said then that the state was at “phase zero” of his plan.
Since then, he’s come under increasing pressure to provide a concrete plan to reopen the state’s businesses that have been shuttered as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. He’s resisted giving a firm date for reopening, however, saying his focus is on preventing as many people from catching the coronavirus as possible.
The governor announced Monday that Nevada would join four other Western states that are coordinating as they relax COVID-19 restrictions and reopen businesses.