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COVID-19 cases rise in Nevada, neighboring states may play role in plans

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Posted at 8:37 PM, Nov 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-19 11:29:28-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Nevada’s neighboring states may play a role in what comes next.

During this week’s COVID-19 task force call, Gov. Steve Sisolak said current measures are not working in the fight against the virus.

RELATED: Gov. Sisolak says 'no significant downtrend' during COVID task force call

Since April, five states including Nevada and California, have been coordinating with each other to tackle COVID-19 through the Western States Pact.

One of the hurdles in the fight has been keeping hospitalizations down.

RELATED: Coronavirus deaths pass 250,000 in the US

Nevada’s COVID-19 response director Caleb Cage says some hospitals are seeing more of their beds filled.

Statewide hospital occupancy is at 81%, ICU’s are at 62% and ventilator use is at 34%, according to Cage.

Dr. Deborah Kuhls, of the Clark County Medical Society, says hospitals are watching these trends carefully.

“Just like with the first wave and the second wave in Nevada if we see ourselves reaching capacity we will take action,” said Dr. Kuhls. “All the hospitals have bought more ventilators, we have surge plans in place.”

In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom quickly moved 40 counties back to a more restrictive reopening tier.

LA County officials say they could tighten restrictions even further due to the surge.

“We really want the data to bear out, we want the information not to be anecdotal, we want to really take a look at those studies,” Gov. Newsom said.

Nevada Gov. Sisolak is expected to make an announcement regarding COVID-19 mitigation efforts early next week.

“I don’t want to shut down the economy if I can avoid it,” Gov. Sisolak said. “The resorts and restaurants have put in strong protocols, it is my hope that if those protocols are followed we will keep everyone safe.”

COVID-19 TRACKER: Latest numbers from state, county officials