Updated September 23, 2020 - 5:07 pm
Nevada reported 509 additional cases of the coronavirus on Wednesday, along with 10 more deaths, according to state data.
The updated figures from the Department of Health and Human Services’ coronavirus website brought the total number of cases in the state to 76,807, while the number of deaths rose to 1,556.
In a statement Wednesday, the Nevada Hospital Association announced “there is no indication” that the Labor Day holiday weekend contributed to “reseeding of resurgence of the virus” in the state.
However, during a regular briefing with reporters on Wednesday, the chairman of the state’s COVID-19 task force indicated he was seeing “noticeable increases” of cases in recent weeks.
“We’re seeing the beginnings of some trends that could be tied to the Labor Day or other public exposures that occurred in the last two weeks,” Caleb Cage said, referencing rallies for President Donald Trump held in Nevada.
He said to better evaluate the trend, the state has requested data from counties where bars were recently allowed to open, which could also be a contributing factor.
The infection rate, calculated by the Review-Journal as the total cases divided by the number of people who have been tested, rose slightly to 11.45 percent on Wednesday. The rate is considered a better indicator of the outbreak than daily case totals or number of deaths.
As of Wednesday, 670,908 people in Nevada have been tested for the virus, state data shows.
The state, which calculates its positivity rate based on the number of tests administered, reported a cumulative rate of 10 percent Wednesday, the same as Tuesday’s statistic. The state’s methodology yields lower figures because many people get tested multiple times, increasing the numbers upon which the percentages are based, which in turn lowers the percentages.
The number of people hospitalized in the state with confirmed or suspected coronavirus cases increased by 38 on Wednesday, to 479.
The hospital association said in its statement Wednesday that hospitalizations of confirmed cases have remained “relatively level,” while suspected cases are fluctuating more.
“This may be due to significant respiratory chief complaints that have been exacerbated by the recent smoke and diminished air quality throughout the state,” the statement said. “Many of these suspected cases are later found to be COVID negative, as evidenced by the continued plateau of lab-confirmed hospitalized cases.”
Meanwhile in Clark County, the Southern Nevada Health District reported 425 additional cases of the virus. The county also reported 10 more deaths, meaning all of the fatalities reported in the state on Wednesday occurred in Clark County.
The data posted to the health district’s coronavirus website brought the totals in the county to 64,895 cases and 1,353 deaths. The agency estimated that 60,033 people in the county had recovered from the virus as of Wednesday.