Coronavirus updates: What we know Thursday in Reno, Las Vegas

This is a breaking news story and will be updated throughout the day Thursday, July 9. This story is part of the Reno Gazette Journal’s essential COVID-19 coverage and is being provided for free. Please consider subscribing to the RGJ to support our work.

Study shows COVID-19 cases may be higher than reported

Wednesday

The number of people in Washoe County with coronavirus is likely thousands more than what is being reported. 

That is just one of the findings coming out of an antibody study done by the Washoe County Health District and the University of Nevada, Reno.

The study gives insight into how prevalent COVID-19 was compared to positive test results that were being reported in June. 

The study took blood samples from 234 adults from a random group of 1,270 households from 128 census blocks in Washoe County.  The tests were done on June 9 and 10 when the number of reported cases was 1,832.

According to the study, the number of people infected was as much as five times higher, meaning more than 8,200 people in the general population were likely infected. 

Of the 234 people who were randomly chosen, six were found to have COVID-19 antibodies. Initial findings found that of those six, only one reported having symptoms.  Using weighted values to the people tested based on age, sex and race, health officials said there are as many as five times as many people infected as were reported.

Read the full story here: COVID-19 cases in Washoe County likely higher than reported

Washoe County reports 3 deaths, 33 new COVID-19 cases

Wednesday

Three more people have died in Washoe County from COVID-19, according to new numbers released by the health district Wednesday.

The most recent deaths include two men in their 90s and a man in his 80s. All three reportedly had underlying health conditions. The total number of deaths in Washoe County is now 85.

The district also reported 33 new cases Wednesday, bringing the total number of known positives to 3,328.

A man walks past a market in downtown Reno, Neveda amid the COVID-19 pandemic on Monday April 20, 2020.

The total number of known active cases totals 1,073, but health officials said a new prevalence study suggests that number could be as high as 5,000 active cases.

“People need to understand we are nowhere near out of this,” Washoe District Health Officer Kevin Dick said. “We are right in this battle with COVID-19.”

Although the number of hospitalizations is increasing, Dick said he isn’t yet concerned about capacity issues. Forty-two percent of intensive care beds remain empty and only 23 percent of ventilators are in use.

On Tuesday, 88 people were hospitalized with COVID-19.

516 new cases, 5 deaths statewide

Wednesday

The known number of Nevadans who have tested positive for COVID-19 reached 24,301 on Wednesday morning, according to the Nevada Health Alliance dashboard. That’s an increase of 516 new cases over what was previously reported on Tuesday morning. The state hit an all-time high in testing on Tuesday, with 12,776 tests administered.

Five more deaths were reported — one in Carson City and four in Clark County — bringing the total number of coronavirus-related deaths in Nevada to 553. The Carson City resident was a man in his 60s with no underlying health conditions, according to Carson City Health ad Human Services.

Hospitalizations were up Tuesday with the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases at 607, an increase of 10 hospitalizations from Monday’s data. An additional 269 hospitalized patients are suspected of having the coronavirus. The combined total of 876 confirmed and suspected cases in Nevada hospitals is an all-time high since the outbreak began. Of those, 233 are in intensive care units, down from 236 the previous day.

One hundred nine patients are on ventilators, down from 112.

The seven-day rolling average for positive tests stands at 13.1%, the lowest since June 23 but still well above the World Health Organization’s goal of 5%.