EDGEWATER

Window lights at the Edgewater Casino Resort in Laughlin send a message of hope to residents and visitors alike that Laughlin’s casino properties will be reopening soon. Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak and the Nevada Gaming Commission still have not announced a date to reopen casinos closed in mid-March but a Gaming Control Board workshop next week is planned to provide Sisolak with the latest information on efforts to bring the state’s gaming industry back to life.

ByKANEWICKHAM

NewsWest

LAUGHLIN — COVID-19 testing in Laughlin conducted earlier this month has shown no confirmation of the disease among township residents.

The testing was conducted May 12-13 at the Aquarius Casino Resort. The Nevada COVID-19 Testing Strike Force partnered with the Laughlin Chamber of Commerce, the Laughlin Chamber Volunteers in Partnership, Southern Nevada Health District, Clark County Nevada, American Medical Response Ambulance Service, Medical Surg Area Command, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Jordan Ross and the Laughlin Constable’s Office, Clark County Office of Emergency Management and Clark County District A Commissioner Michael Naft to offer the tests.

Results so far show Laughlin to still be COVID-free, according to Clark County Administrator Alex Ortiz as well as the Southern Nevada Health District website that posts COVID-19 cases by ZIP code. Both 89028 and 89029, ZIP codes assigned to Laughlin by the U.S. Postal Service, are in the “suppressed” category, which the health district uses to describe areas with five or fewer confirmed cases. No confirmed cases previously had been reported in Laughlin.

Ortiz went a step further.

”The SNHD collected 775 total samples for testing,” he said. “So far, all tests have been negative for COVID-19.” 

Laughlin started out with 1,000 test kits for its two-day testing initiative but used fewer than that, according to Ortiz. He did not indicate how many test results were pending.

At least medically, it appears that Laughlin has dodged the COVID-19 bullet. The same cannot be said for the township financially. With Laughlin’s gaming properties ordered closed by Gov. Steve Sisolak — as well as the associated restaurants and several other businesses covered by the executive order — the town’s tourism-dependent industries of gaming, hospitality and entertainment have taken a huge hit.

While Laughlin, at least for now, has avoided any confirmed COVID-19 cases, the same cannot be said for Clark County. The SNHD has reported 5,734 COVID-19 cases and 320 deaths, nearly all since March 1.

There have been 7,255 positive cases in Nevada with 378 deaths, according to Nevada Health Response. 

To date, Nevada has tested 94,382 people, resulting in an infection rate of 7.60%. 

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