A Guide to Coronavirus Resources in Nevada

As the month of March draws to a close, it is evident in retrospect that this otherwise unremarkable page on the calendar has marked a turning point in American life, at least for the near term. In early March the nation learned that a nursing home outside of Seattle, Washington had become the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak in the United States. [1] By the middle of the month, the World Health Organization had officially dubbed the outbreak a pandemic, [2] and the federal government had declared a national emergency over the virus. [3] Schools closed, businesses shuttered, and people stayed home across most of the country. As the month ends, some have begun to question whether the economic pain of suppressing the virus is worth the public health benefits it is expected to provide. [4]

Here in Nevada, Governor Steve Sisolak took early and unrelenting action to try and staunch the effect of the outbreak in the Silver State. He ordered all non-essential businesses closed for 30 days, including the state’s world-famous casinos. Select retailers, grocery stores, pharmacies, and gas stations are among the only businesses allowed to operate during this time.

As we explored in an earlier blog post, the slowdown in economic activity, the expectation that people will largely remain at home and “shelter in place,” and the emergent social practice to give each other a wide berth will likely cause personal injury lawsuits to dwindle, at least in the near term. As two of Nevada’s leading accident attorneys, we expect to experience our own share of economic pain in the coming weeks as our active cases slow down due to coronavirus disruptions and potential clients postpone legal action to vindicate their legal rights.

We will be fine, and we want to turn this negative prospect into a positive outcome for our community. That is why we have assembled this list of coronavirus resources. We hope that it will be a service to people looking for coronavirus help across Nevada, including in the communities of Carson City, Elko, Ely, Las Vegas, Pahrump, Reno, Sparks, and West Wendover among many Nevada communities large and small.

PLAN’s Wide-Ranging Resource Database

The Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN) is a left-leaning political advocacy organization. In addition to its political work, PLAN provides a number of community services including assistance with immigration legal services and referrals to human services. PLAN maintains an expansive directory of community resources that long pre-dates the coronavirus pandemic. Here is a list of the topics the PLAN database covers:

  • COVID-19
  • Food Services
  • For College Students
  • For Immigrants
  • For Incarcerated People
  • For Small Businesses
  • For Tribal Members
  • For Veterans
  • For Workers
  • Healthcare
  • Housing
  • Legal Aid
  • Mutual Aid
  • Utilities
  • Wellness

Within the COVID-19 or coronavirus section are referrals to the four regional health authorities: Carson City Health and Human Services, Nevada Department of Public and Behavioral Health, Southern Nevada Health District, and Washoe County Health District.

The Nevada Department of Public and Behavioral Health is Nevada’s statewide health authority, but it also oversees the provision of health services within Nevada’s smaller, rural counties where there is not a full-scale, standalone health agency. According to the Nevada Department of Public and Behavioral Health, there are also several city and county-level information resources for the coronavirus:

  • Churchill County
  • Clark County
  • Elko County
  • Esmeralda County
  • Humboldt County
  • Nye County
  • Pershing County
  • Storey County
  • White Pine County
  • City of Fallon
  • City of Henderson
  • City of Las Vegas
  • City of North Las Vegas
  • City of Reno
  • City of Sparks [5]

Food Resources During the Coronavirus Crisis

We have described the rush to stockpile food shortly after the coronavirus was designated as a pandemic and the country adopted a national-emergency posture toward it. Readers will know from first-hand experience that stores across Nevada are affected by odd shortages of certain items: disposable paper products like tissue and paper towels; disinfectants like hand sanitizer, bleach, sanitizing wipes and sprays, and even hand soap; and shelf-stable food items like canned vegetables, frozen meals, and flour.

There are three pressures making it hard to obtain food at this moment. One is the above-mentioned stockpiling that has disrupted supply chains with a sudden rush of demand. Another is the need to take “social distancing” precautions within stores by limiting admission, resulting in long lines. The third is that tens of thousands of Nevadans have been laid off in the last couple of weeks, leaving them uncertain whether they can afford to put food on the table.

In the Las Vegas area, the food bank Three Square has dozens of food distribution centers available. This includes drive-thru locations and walk-in pantries. [6]

In the Reno-Sparks area, Catholic Charities of Northern Nevada has continued to operate its food pantry at its location on Fourth Street in downtown Reno. [7] The Food Bank of Northern Nevada serves a wider range of northern Nevadans and has also kept many of its operations in place. [8]

PLAN has also compiled a list of stores’ shopping hours specially designated for populations at high-risk from the coronavirus pandemic, mainly seniors over age 60 or over 65. [9]

[1] https://www.cnn.com/2020/03/04/health/washington-state-nursing-facility-coronavirus-family/index.html

[2] https://www.who.int/dg/speeches/detail/who-director-general-s-opening-remarks-at-the-media-briefing-on-covid-19—11-march-2020

[3] https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/proclamation-declaring-national-emergency-concerning-novel-coronavirus-disease-covid-19-outbreak

[4] https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-27/how-trump-picked-easter-as-back-to-normal-date-despite-outbreak

[5] http://dpbh.nv.gov/coronavirus

[6] https://www.threesquare.org/help

[7] https://ccsnn.org/pages/food-pantry

[8] https://fbnn.org

[9] https://drive.google.com/file/d/1GCh1RzPsnqRTED4DaIOicpaxBHxeAtAc/view

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