Forty-nine Nevadans onboard the Grand Princess cruise ship diverted to Oakland this week are receiving charter flights back to the Silver State and will be escorted home to begin a quarantine as a result of potential exposure to coronavirus (COVID-19), state and local officials announced Tuesday.
Health officials have been in contact with Nevada passengers, who are reportedly all asymptomatic, said Kevin Dick, Washoe County Health District’s health officer. Forty-five people aboard the Grand Princess ship were tested for coronavirus with kits delivered by the U.S. Coast Guard and 21 came back positive. The ship went to the Hawaiian Islands and was scheduled to dock at San Francisco’s cruise port upon return.
Nevada’s state and local health authorities are prepared to support and safeguard you and your family, friends, and community.”
Gov. Steve Sisolak arranged for Nevadans to be screened and airlifted on one of two secure flights to non-public airports, one in Northern Nevada, the other in Southern Nevada. No further information was made public. Anyone refusing screening will remain in federal custody and be sent to a military base in either Texas or Georgia for quarantine.
“I am extremely gratified to let you know that you are returning to Nevada and not going to a military base in another state due to your potential exposure to COVID-19 aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship,” Sisolak wrote in a letter to Nevada passengers.
“You will receive a call today from your local health authority to evaluate your home situation and ensure that you are prepared for the required isolation period. With your return home, Nevada’s state and local health authorities are prepared to support and safeguard you and your family, friends, and community in the most efficient manner possible to protect everyone involved from the potential spread of COVID-19.”
Once charter flights arrive, health officials will transport passengers to their residences and Medical Research Corps staff will assist them with electronic grocery ordering and delivery, he said. Vehicles will be disinfected.
Passengers will be met upon arrival to be sure they understand their obligation. Dick said there are criminal charges for those who don’t comply with quarantines. He mentioned there’s a possibility of surveillance; although if it’s enacted, it likely wouldn’t be 24 hours.
“They’ll have a thermometer provided to them as part of their return, so everybody has a thermometer,” Dick said. “They’ll self-monitor and report back to the health district during that 14-day period on their condition. If any of them develop symptoms during that timeframe, we’ll be alerted to that immediately and we can take action to confirm whether it’s potential COVID-19.”
If any subjects exhibit symptoms during their 14-day incubation period, they will get re-tested for COVID-19. If they test positive, Dick said their quarantine would be extended and they would need two negative tests at least 24 hours apart before being cleared.
Coronavirus is a respiratory virus identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China in late December. Symptoms include fever, coughing, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. It has sickened and killed thousands worldwide.
Washoe County has had one confirmed positive case by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a man in his 50s who recently returned home from a different cruise. There is also one presumptive positive case, a man in his 30s who recently traveled to Santa Clara, Calif. His results are awaiting CDC verification.
This Is Reno’s COVID-19 news coverage
The Washoe County Health District is offering COVID-19 vaccines to anyone 6 months old or older starting Wednesday, June 22, 2022 at 1001 East Ninth Street, building B.
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The number of reported new daily COVID-19 cases more than doubled over the past two weeks, increasing from nearly 55 new cases per day to 111.
Los funcionarios del Distrito de Salud del Condado de Washoe dijeron el viernes que ya habían comenzado a proporcionar vacunas de refuerzo contra el COVID-19 a niños de 5 a 11 años.
Washoe County Health District officials on Friday said they’d already begun providing COVID-19 booster shots to children ages 5-11.
Ultimately, state public health officials found that Northshore’s PCR tests missed 96% of the positive cases from the university campus — errors that sent people infected with COVID-19 back into the community.
El Oficial de Salud del Distrito del Condado de Washoe, Kevin Dick, dijo hoy que la nueva variante de omicron está creando un aumento en los casos de COVID-19.
Washoe County District Health Officer Kevin Dick today said the new omicron variant is creating an increase in COVID-19 cases.
Carla has an undergraduate degree in journalism and more than 10 years experience as a daily newspaper reporter. She grew up in Jacksonville, Fla., moved to the Reno area in 2002 and wrote for the Reno Gazette-Journal for 8 years, covering a variety of topics. Prior to that, she covered local government in Fort Pierce, Fla.