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Demand for COVID testing increases traffic and depletes supply at UNLV site

Residents of southern Nevada seeking a COVID-19 test waited hours in a traffic jam before some were turned away Sunday night from an UNLV drive-thru site that closed two and a half hours earlier.

“Last night the site performed 1,750 tests in its first 2.5 hours of operation and closed at 8 pm when it reached capacity for the evening,” the Clark County spokesperson said. , Stacey Welling, in a statement. Running.

The UNLV test site is the only community test available on Sundays in southern Nevada. It was originally scheduled to operate from 5:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. His “normal capacity” for a Sunday night is 500 tests.

“The tests are available free at the site on a first come, first served basis,” Welling said, adding that the timeframe for results is between 48 and 72 hours. “There has been a high demand on the UNLV drive-thru site since last weekend. “

The Southern Nevada Health District is reporting 16,484 new cases of COVID in the past seven days, not including those diagnosed through self-administered rapid antigen tests.

The seven-day-per-day average in Clark County peaked for the month on Dec. 30 at 2,239 – well above the daily average of 1,717 on the same day a year ago. Deaths, however, have not increased.

Nevada is just on the verge of reaching half a million COVID infections since March 2020, according to the state’s COVID tracker. The state is reporting a seven-day average of 1,945 new cases per day as of Jan. 2.

“Today we are seeing an alarming number of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations reported after the year-end vacation,” Governor Steve Sisolak said in a statement. “My team continues to analyze the numbers and we are working with health districts and other partners to provide resources to tackle the wave we are facing. “

The county urges individuals to search community testing sites listed on snhd.info/covid-testing and on the Nevada Response website at nvhealthresponse.nv.gov/find-covid-19-testing-in-nevada/.

“Many of these sites accept walk-in appointments while others require appointments that can be scheduled on their websites,” she said.

Welling was not aware of any immediate efforts to increase options for those looking for a Sunday community test site.