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Nevada’s COVID-19 death toll tops 1.5K as state adds 347 new cases

Updated September 17, 2020 - 11:51 am

Nevada recorded 347 new COVID-19 cases and a dozen additional fatalities over the preceding day, as the state death toll climbed past 1,500, state data posted Thursday showed.

Figures posted by the Department of Health and Human Services on the state coronavirus website raised the case total for the state to 74,595, while the latest fatalities increased the death toll to 1,506.

New cases were above the daily average of just over 284 for the preceding week, while deaths were slightly above the daily average of nearly 12 for the period.

The state’s cumulative infection or positivity rate, considered a better indicator of the trend of the outbreak than daily case and death reporting, remained unchanged at 11.44 percent.

The rate, calculated by the Review-Journal by dividing confirmed cases by the number of people tested, has been inching lower since hitting a recent peak of 11.63 percent on Sept. 4.

But a seven-day moving average calculated by the state using a slightly different formula has been climbing for the past week, rising from 6.6 percent on Sept. 8 to 7.5 percent in Thursday’s report. The seven-day rate is more sensitive than the cumulative rate and is likely starting to register additional exposures from the long Labor Day weekend on Sept. 5-7.

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The state also reported a total of 6,684 new tests in Thursday’s report, a bit higher than the daily average of just over 6,529 for the preceding week.

It also said that hospitalizations of confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases declined by four over the preceding day to 484, ending a three-day streak of increases.

The Nevada Hospital Association said in an update Wednesday that such “fluctuations are anticipated following a major holiday and do not pose any issue so long as the infrastructure can adapt and incorporate new cases into the health care system. Nevada is well poised to accommodate the anticipated increases at this time.”

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The Southern Nevada Health District, meanwhile, reported 224 new COVID-19 cases and 11 deaths over the preceding day.

Data posted to the district’s coronavirus web page increased the case total for the county to 63,301 and raised the death toll to 1,309.

New cases were above the daily average of 205 for the preceding week, and the fatalities were just below the daily average of nearly 12 for the period.

Clark County data is generally reflected in the state’s reporting, but there are occasional discrepancies because of reporting issues.

Both the health district and the state redistribute data on cases and deaths in an effort to better reflect the onset of symptoms or date of death, so daily numbers often do not correlate with the figures used in details breakdowns that the agencies provide.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

Contact Mike Brunker at mbrunker@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4656. Follow @mike_brunker on Twitter.

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