Updated August 13, 2020 - 3:42 pm
Nevada reached a grim milestone Wednesday with 1,000 reported deaths from COVID-19.
Nevada recorded 528 new COVID-19 cases and 15 additional deaths over the preceding day, according to state data posted Wednesday.
Data posted by the Department of Health and Human Services on its nvhealthresponse.nv.gov website brought the case total for the state to 58,048 and raised the death toll to 996. Late in the day, Washoe County added three deaths to its toll and Elko County added one, for a total of 1,000.
There were some positive signs in the day’s data, however.
New cases were well below average for the second day in a row, 235 below the daily average of 763 for the preceding week. Fatalities were slightly below the daily average of 17 over the period, according to state data.
The state infection or positivity rate, considered a better barometer of the trend of the outbreak than the daily case and death numbers, edged higher despite the declining number of new cases. As of Wednesday’s report, it stood at 11 percent, according to records kept by the Review-Journal.
The rate, confirmed cases divided by the number of people tested, has been rising steadily since it bottomed out in mid-June at 5.20 percent, indicating that a larger percentage of people being tested for COVID-19 are receiving positive results.
Hospitalizations of suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients increased by 27 to 998 but remained lower than the plateau of between 1,100 and 1,165 seen through last week.
The Nevada Hospital Association noted the increase in its daily update but said that Nevada “continues to have enough hospital capacity to meet medical demands.”
Testing for COVID-19 has declined in the state this week from the record levels seen recently, which created a backlog that kept many patients from learning their diagnoses in a timely fashion. The state reported Wednesday that 4,687 tests were reported on the preceding day, well below the record 18,597 tests reported on Sunday.
So far this week, a daily average of 6,423 tests have been reported, compared to average of well over 1,000 a day over the preceding two weeks.
The Southern Nevada Health District reported 345 new cases of COVID-19 and 14 deaths in Clark County over the preceding day.
The figures posted by the district on its coronavirus webpage pushed the case total for the county to 50,081 and increased the death toll to 842.
The district estimates that 42,952 of those who contracted the disease have recovered.
New cases were well below the daily average of nearly 669 for the preceding week, while the fatalities were slightly below the daily average of 16 for the period.
A previous version of this article contained a mathematical error in describing the state’s case statistics.