CARSON CITY — Nevada officials reported 3,402 new confirmed coronavirus cases on Thursday, breaking the record for most cases reported in a single day.
Officials also reported 44 deaths, bringing the statewide totals to 240,795 cases and 3,339 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
The record-setting case count comes one day after Nevada reported 60 coronavirus deaths, marking the pandemic's highest single-day toll. The state has consistently rewritten its record books for coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations throughout the months-long surge that has spared no county, rural or urban.
Positive tests decreased slightly around the holiday. But although many rejoiced at the downward trend, state officials anticipated residents returning from family gatherings would likely flood testing sites after the holiday, causing a spike. State officials reported roughly 18,000 new tests on Thursday, the most since Dec. 10.
Nevada COVID-19 response director Caleb Cage said Wednesday that the crowds of people that gathered in Las Vegas on New Year's Eve would likely spread the virus and be reflected in the numbers eventually.
Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak tightened restrictions on a temporary basis on Nov. 22, reducing capacity limits on businesses and private gatherings. The restrictions are set to expire on Jan. 15, unless Sisolak extends them.
Most cases have been in Las Vegas and surrounding Clark County, the region where most of the state’s population lives.
Authorities nationally say the number of infections could be higher than reported because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.
For most people, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms for up to three weeks, although older adults and people with existing health problems can face severe illness and death. The vast majority of people recover.