NEVADA HEALTH RESPONSE COVID-19 RISK MITIGATION INITIATIVE
“The most effective course of action is for all Nevadans to stay home and for all nonessential businesses to temporarily close to the public for 30 days.” - Governor Steve Sisolak, March 17, 2020
This Nevada Health Response COVID-19 Risk Mitigation Initiative (Initiative), is issued as guidance following Governor Sisolak’s Tuesday, March 17, 2020 Press Conference, and pursuant to Governor Sisolak’s March 12, 2020 Declaration of Emergency, which cites Article 5, Section 1 of the Nevada Constitution declaring that the “supreme executive power of this State, shall be vested in a Chief Magistrate who shall be the Governor of the State of Nevada.”
The goal of this Initiative is to protect the health and safety of Nevadans by preventing people coming together unnecessarily, where people who have the infection can easily spread it to others. Ask yourself this question: “Where do people get within 6 feet of other individuals for an extended period of time?” -- then avoid those areas.
As with all Initiative parameters related to the COVID-19 crisis, the Governor, the Nevada Health Response Center, and local and state health authorities will revisit this guidance on a regular basis to evaluate the continued public health needs and whether any elements need to be changed.
The immediate implementation of aggressive strategies to create social distance and decrease close contact of people, including limiting gatherings, has proven effective in prior pandemics at delaying rates of transmission and reducing death and illness. By decreasing the prevalence of disease across Nevada we will:
• Reduce the number of Nevadans who contract COVID-19 before an effective treatment or vaccine is available.
• Protect those most likely to experience severe symptoms, such as older Nevadans and those with underlying chronic conditions.
• Preserve and protect our health care delivery system, including our health care workforce, so they can care for the least healthy individuals in the community for any medical condition, not just COVID-19.
• Minimize the social and economic impacts of COVID-19 over the long run.
SOCIAL DISTANCING GUIDELINES
Nevadans must ensure that 6 feet of social distancing per person for non-household members is maintained at all times.
Examples of activities to avoid:
• Group gatherings
• Concerts and theater outings
• Athletic events
• Visitors in your house
• Non-essential workers in your house
• Shopping in malls
• Workouts in gyms
Initiative parameters on gatherings:
All gatherings should be postponed or canceled.
For purposes of this Initiative, a “gathering” is any event or convening that brings people together in a single room or single space at the same time – indoor or outdoor.
When it comes to gatherings, the risk is based on the proximity between individuals and how they are interacting with one another. The risk does not disappear in small gatherings. It’s the social distancing that will make the difference.
• We still want you to experience the joy of weddings, but this is not the time to bring your friends together -- especially if this will require travel. Consider postponing the celebration to a time when the risk is low or eliminated.
• For Nevadans making preparations to say goodbye to loved ones, please limit the attendance at funeral services. Consider outdoor services where the risk of exposure is less than inside.
• While the Governor cannot and will not say that places of worship should be closed, he strongly urges our faith leaders to find ways to tend to your congregation without bringing them together in person.
ESSENTIAL AND NON-ESSENTIAL SERVICES & SECTORS
Essential services and sectors include, but are not limited to:
• Fire services, law enforcement agencies, ambulances, paramedics, all emergency medical services & public safety agencies
• Healthcare services
• Businesses or organizations that provide food, shelter, or critical social services for disadvantaged populations
• Utilities as defined in NRS Chapter 704
• Trash collection
• Home maintenance/repair services
• Auto repair services & trucking service centers
• Grocery stores, supermarkets, hardware stores, convenience & discount stores
• Pharmacies, healthcare operations, & biomedical facilities
• Post offices & shipping outlets
• Gas stations & truck stops
• Banks & financial institutions
• Veterinary services & pet stores
• Laundromats & dry cleaners
• Food processing
• Agriculture, livestock & feed mills
• Logistics & Supply Chain Operations: Warehousing, storage, distribution, and supply-chain related operations
• Air transportation
• Public transportation
• Essential stays in hotels, commercial lodging, dormitories, shelters, and homeless encampments
• Child care centers and daycares operating in accordance with requirements set forth by their licensing authorities and COVID-19 guidance
Although these businesses may remain open, the Nevada Health Response Center maintains that all employees and patrons employ strict social distancing practices. In addition, businesses should:
• Remind employees of best hygiene practices, including washing their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
• Increase the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing per CDC Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection guidance of all hard surfaces, including tables and countertops that are being utilized by employees and patrons during pickup/delivery options.
Other businesses, including but not limited to legal services, business and management consulting, professional services and insurance services are encouraged to have employees work remotely or telecommute.
If that is not possible, they should employ strict social distancing practices as set forth by the Nevada Health Response Center and the CDC.
Non-essential services and sectors include, but are not limited to:
• Entertainment & hospitality, including but not limited to strip clubs and brothels, casinos, concert venues, arenas, auditoriums, stadiums, large conference rooms, meeting halls, and cafeterias
• Recreation and athletic facilities, including but not limited to community and recreation centers, gyms, health clubs, fitness centers, yoga, barre and spin facilities
• Beauty and personal care services and facilities, including but not limited to barber shops, beauty, tanning, waxing hair salons, and nail salons and spas
• Retail facilities, including shopping malls except for pharmacy or other health care facilities within retail operations. Retailers are encouraged to continue online operations with pickup and delivery.
FOOD & BEVERAGE ESTABLISHMENTS GUIDANCE
The Governor directed all restaurants and bars to close their dine-in facilities to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Businesses that offer carry-out, delivery, and drive-through food and beverage service may continue to do so, but eating and drinking inside restaurants and bars is temporarily prohibited. These businesses offering carry-out, delivery, and drive-through food and beverage should employ strict social distancing protocol. Additional information is below:
• Charitable food distribution sites, including the meals being distributed to our students in wake of the school closings, along with grocery stores, should remain fully open and operational.
• Food services for healthcare facilities and other essential facilities should remain open.
• Any buffet or food stations used in charitable food distribution settings should transition to boxed meals or served through gloved staff members or volunteers.
• Restaurants throughout Nevada, in addition to pubs, wineries, bars, and breweries that include meals provided by a full kitchen should be reduced to serving food only in a drive-thru, take-out or delivery capacity. No dine-in at food establishments should be allowed until further notice. This also includes food courts, coffee shops, catered events, clubs, bowling alleys, and other similar venues in which people congregate for the consumption of food.
• Pubs, wineries, bars, and breweries that do not include meals provided by a full kitchen should close.
For the food establishments allowed to remain open, you should:
• Immediately increase sanitizing and cleaning frequency of high contact areas -- such as restrooms.
• Enforce stringent hygiene practices for your staff, including frequent and thorough hand washing for at least 20 seconds at a time.
The Governor announced that all gaming machines, devices, tables, games, and any equipment related to gaming activity will be shut down. Restaurants and bars located within gaming properties will be subject to the same restrictions as those outside of gaming establishments.
Licensed cannabis stores and medical dispensaries should only remain open if employees and consumers strictly adhere to the social distancing protocol. The Nevada Health Response Center is encouraging consumers to use delivery services and not congregate in stores.