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Nevada coronavirus positivity rate hits lowest level since Nov. 12

Updated February 15, 2021 - 4:04 pm

Nevada’s major coronavirus indicators continued their downward trajectory on Monday, when the state reported a new test positivity rate of 12.8 percent.

The rate, calculated over a moving two-week period, is one of the key indicators public health officials monitor. Nevada’s positivity rate has been declining for a little more than a month since peaking above 21 percent.

According to state data, the rate was last below 13 percent on Nov. 12.

The positivity rate for COVID-19 is still not where public health officials want it. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would like to see the rate close to 5 percent, Caleb Cage, Nevada’s coronavirus response director, has said.

The state Department of Health and Human Services also reported 391 new coronavirus cases and 11 additional deaths, bringing cumulative totals to 288,739 cases and 4,720 fatalities since the beginning of the pandemic in March.

New cases fell well below the moving two-week average of 543 cases per day. Fatalities also were below the daily moving average of 14 over the same period.

Cage has said reporting over weekends can produce lower numbers on Mondays.

Hospitalization numbers also have been trending lower. As of Monday’s update, 755 people with either confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 were hospitalized in Nevada. That was a little over one-third of the peak total of 2,126 reported on Dec. 22.

Meanwhile, the Southern Nevada Health District on Monday reported 241 new coronavirus cases and 11 additional deaths in Clark County, bringing local totals to 222,670 cases and 3,650 deaths. Clark County’s numbers are included in statewide totals.

UNLV epidemiologist Brian Labus said the decreasing numbers are good, but the state still is not at low infection levels, so people should continue taking steps to slow the spread of the virus.

“If you look at what’s happened … basically since the governor put the pause in, we’ve been able to first kind of plateau the transmission, and now the transmission continues to decrease, and that’s a reflection of our behaviors,” he said.

Contact Blake Apgar at bapgar@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5298. Follow @blakeapgar on Twitter.

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