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Southern Nevada Health District adds COVID-19 testing kits to lab

SNHD now has 3 kits to test 800 specimens
Posted at 5:18 PM, Mar 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-07 16:31:36-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The Southern Nevada Health District is now ramping up its ability to test for the coronavirus.

SNHD says its lab now has three testing kits, which can process around 800 specimens. They say the lab will receive samples from local health care providers after a patient is evaluated.

Which person gets tested is based on CDC guidelines, which advise local health care providers to assess a patient based on what’s going on in the community and their symptoms.

The health district says additional kits, if needed, can be requested from the CDC.

RELATED: Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak gives latest update on coronavirus

U.S. Senators Catherine Cortez Masto and Jacky Rosen sent a letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar requesting the agency fulfill Governor Steve Sisolak’s request for additional COVID-19 test kits for the state.

“As of today, Nevada has two presumptive-positive cases of coronavirus in both the northern and southern parts of the state. Nevada’s public health agencies are currently in the process of examining the extent of contact that these patients had with others in the state before they became symptomatic,” said the Senators. “In order to ensure that our public health agencies can respond quickly and appropriately to this evolving situation, we respectfully request the assistance of the Department of Health and Human Services in securing additional COVID-19 test kits for the State of Nevada as soon as possible.”

The health district says the risk of transmission of the coronavirus remains low in Clark County and continues to stress for people to wash their hands and stay away from school or work if they’re sick.