COVID-19 cases stable in Clark County as 'emergency' end nears; Kraken variant causing 95% of cases

COVID-19 cases stable in Clark County as ’emergency’ end nears; Kraken variant causing 95% of cases

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The full COVID-19 report for March 7-13 appears below.

EDITOR’S NOTE: 8 News Now will continue to report on significant developments related to COVID-19, but this is our last regular weekly report.

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — COVID-19 cases increased by 1% in Clark County over the past week, and hospitalizations went down by three patients.

The numbers that tell the story of COVID-19’s effects on the Las Vegas valley haven’t changed much since the end of January. Hospitals are no longer struggling with the load created by flu, RSV and COVID-19 in November and December.

But even as case numbers bounce up and down from week to week, the reports of deaths continue. Those deaths — more than 130 reported since Jan. 1 in Clark County — are a big factor in why 8 News Now has continued to report COVID-19 statistics each week.

The pandemic “health emergency” will officially expire in the United States in May, bringing changes to a lot of the free testing and extra attention paid to the virus. But COVID-19 will still be out there circulating. We will continue to report on trends and milestones — such as when the state reaches 12,000 deaths for the pandemic. Currently, Nevada is at 11,937 deaths. But the week-to-week reports on cases, hospitalizations and death counts end with today’s report.

The 14-day moving average (per 100,000 population) increased just 1% in Clark County compared to last week. Statewide, cases increased by 0.8%.

Hospitalizations decreased slightly, with 127 patients in Clark County. Statewide patient counts increased to 154. Information from the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services shows patient counts haven’t been under 100 since October in Clark County — and since April, 2022, for the state.

Hospitals are 71% full across the state, according to a weekly report from the Nevada Hospital Association. NHA said 10% of all emergency room visits were related to COVID-19 symptoms.

“The three monitored contagious respiratory viruses (COVID, RSV, and flu) are at near‐record lows within the Nevada hospital system at this time. The 7‐day average for COVID has been stable for several weeks, with 132 patients admitted and roughly 21% (29) of these patients requiring ICU‐level care,” according to NHA.

The Southern Nevada Health District reports that 95% of COVID-19 cases over the past 30 days have involved the “Kraken” variant — XBB.1.5.

That strain of the virus has been steadily growing in the community. While it is highly contagious, it has been causing fewer serious illnesses in the general population.

Clark County reports eight new deaths, now at 9,321 for the pandemic. Statewide, deaths increased by 15 to a total of 11,937.

An important effort to monitor wastewater in Clark County continues, with an update through March 7 showing parts of the valley where COVID-19 could be spreading in the community. The highest levels last week came from sewer samples at one of three monitoring sites in Henderson. But even that level was not much higher than it’s been since mid-December.

Wastewater surveillance shows the presence of COVID-19 DNA as it is shed by people who have been exposed to the virus. It shows up in sewers before people ever get sick — if they get sick at all.

But it’s important to note that people with underlying health conditions should avoid exposure. Conditions including hypertension (high blood pressure) and diabetes pose the biggest risks

If you have symptoms, get tested and avoid spreading the virus to others. If you haven’t been vaccinated, go to the Southern Nevada Health District’s website for information on getting a shot, or updating your immunity by getting a booster.


  • New daily confirmed cases (14-day moving average, per 100,000 population) 93 — up from 92 the previous week. (1%)
  • Total cases: 622,572*
  • Deaths: 8 since last week (total: 9,321)
  • Hospitalizations: 127 (down 3 from the previous week)
    *-A difference in case counts exists between SNHD and the state. By SNHD’s current count, Clark County has had 601,146 cases as of last week.


  • New daily confirmed cases (14-day moving average, per 100,000 population) 122 — down from 123 the previous week. (-0.8%).
  • Total cases: 821,715
  • Deaths: 15 since last week (total: 11,937)
  • Hospitalizations: 154 (up 1 from the previous week)

The county’s COVID-19 community level has been at “low” since Thursday, Jan. 5. The county had been at “medium” since Thursday, Dec. 1, after staying at “low” since Aug. 11, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.

See last week’s report here.

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