Local News


UPDATE: Local patient possibly with coronavirus in isolation at home

Patient with similar symptoms hospitalized
Posted at 8:45 AM, Jan 29, 2020

UPDATE JAN. 31: The Southern Nevada Health District said a Clark County resident possibly infected with coronavirus has been discharged from a local hospital and is now in isolation at home.

The Southern Nevada Health District announced today that it received a report of a potential case of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in a Clark County resident.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will be testing samples from the Southern Nevada resident who has been identified as a PUI. Currently, Nevada has NO CONFIRMED cases of novel coronavirus.


During the press conference, the Health District said that the adult patient had spent time in the area of Wuhan before flying into McCarran International Airport on Jan. 14. The patient has minimal symptoms, including coughing. The symptoms did not appear until after the patient arrived in Las Vegas. The patient was hospitalized on Jan. 28.

The Health District also explained that a person traveling from China very well not show symptoms while going through screening. Symptoms can take 2 to 14 days to appear. The patient in Clark County was hospitalized 10 days after arrival. The patient is currently in isolation.

The Health District also stressed that there is a low risk of transmission of the novel coronavirus in Clark County and the United States. If the Health District does determine that it is coronavirus, they will inform the public.

It is unknown at this time where the patient is hospitalized. Southern Hills Hospital issued this statement on Wednesday morning after rumors began circulating online:

An inaccurate tweet surfaced last night stating that Southern Hills Hospital and Medical Center had a patient with coronavirus, this is false. Seasonally, we screen patients for fever, flu-like symptoms and travel. With the novel coronavirus, we’re practicing heightened vigilance by specifying recent travel history from China and, at first point of contact, screening patients for fever and respiratory illness. We have not seen any patients with the new coronavirus, and, as part of HCA Healthcare, which is working in tandem with the CDC on proactive preparedness precautions, we are receiving regular updates and guidance. We appreciate the news organizations that verified with us and the Southern Nevada Health District before pushing out the incorrect information about our hospital. Any further questions should be directed to the SNHD.

The Nevada Department of Health and Human Services has issued guidance to health care providers, medical facilities and laboratories regarding the clinical characteristics of 2019-nCoV, assessing patients with compatible symptoms and recent travel to Wuhan, China, clinical specimen collection and testing, and effective health care infection prevention and control.

“While this novel coronavirus may be causing concern, it’s important to remember that there are only five confirmed cases in the United States and all of those cases had travelled to Wuhan, China,” said the Department of Health and Human Services Chief Medical Officer Ihsan Azzam, Ph.D, MD. “Currently, this virus is not spreading in the United States. Early detection of cases; prompt application of case isolation and timely quarantining contacts, in addition to practicing proper hygiene, will help us control this outbreak. We continue to monitor the situation and work with our state and federal partners."

PREVIOUS STORY: Health officials explain risk of coronavirus in Southern Nevada

“Seasonal influenza, or flu, continues to circulate throughout Nevada. It’s not too late to get a flu shot,” he said.

The flu vaccine is still available for residents, and Nevadans are encouraged to contact their health care provider for more information. The CDC recommends routine, annual flu vaccinations and specifically notes the importance of a vaccine for high risk populations.

About Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV):

Patients with confirmed 2019-nCoV infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, shortness of breath, headache, runny nose and/or sore throat. However, limited information is available to characterize the spectrum of clinical illness associated with this illness.

Currently, the CDC is the only entity that can test for 2019-nCOV.

Based on what has been seen previously during respiratory disease outbreaks caused by coronavirus, it is believed that symptoms of 2019-nCoV may appear anytime between two and 14 days after exposure. At this time, it is unclear how easily or sustainably 2019-nCov is spreading between people, but the current risk to the U.S. and Nevada public remains low. There is currently no vaccine for 2019-nCoV, but like any respiratory viral illness it is recommended to practice good health hygiene habits.

There is currently no vaccine to prevent infection. The best way to do so is to avoid exposure to this virus. The CDC recommends the following every day preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.