Casino Caribbean Yakima was shuttered for two days recently after a coronavirus “outbreak,” according to the local health district. There were 12 COVID-19 cases at the gaming property last week, the Yakima Health District reported Monday in an online statement.
The infected people at the casino appear to be workers. Also, other casino employees tested positive for the virus earlier.
To date there have been 19 of 112 employees from Casino Caribbean that have tested positive,” the health district said on Monday.
Due to last week’s outbreak, casino operators chose to voluntarily close the gaming site on Friday. There was a deep-cleaning on Saturday. The casino reopened on Sunday.
Casino Caribbean Yakima knew about the recent COVID cases at least two days before the temporary closure. A statement from the Yakima Health District said the cases were reported to the local health district on May 5 (last Wednesday.)
In its guidance, the Yakima Health District told the gaming property all employees at the casino need to get tested for COVID-19, and then continue to get tested weekly.
To be at work, employees must either have a negative test, be fully vaccinated, or have had COVID-19 within the last 90 days, the health district said.
Also, employees must be monitored for COVID-19 symptoms, the district said. The district also wants the casino to ensure masks are worn by staff and customers.
Casino Caribbean put the guidance from the health district in place, KIT, a local radio station, reported.
In its statement, the Yakima Health District said it “will continue to work closely with Casino Caribbean to ensure the outbreak is contained.”
“COVID-19 proves time and again that it can spread quickly in various settings. We ask that people get vaccinated,” Dr. Larry Jecha, interim health officer, Yakima Health District, said in the statement.
“If they choose not to get vaccinated, … ensure that they are wearing a mask and maintain at least 6 feet of distance from others,” he added.
The best intervention we have is the COVID-19 vaccine, otherwise, it is our responsibility to ensure we are following the other public health recommendations to keep our community safe,” Jecha advised.
Yakima is located 142 miles southeast of Seattle. It is also about 60 miles southeast of Mount Rainier.
Casino Caribbean Yakima is owned by Maverick Gaming LLC, a closely held regional company. It owns several local casinos in Washington State.
US COVID Cases Began in Washington State
Washington State apparently saw the first COVID-19 case in the US. It was announced on Jan. 21, 2020.
The state also had the first fatal case from coronavirus. Many of those who died initially from the illness were residents at a nursing home in Kirkland called the Life Care Center.
On Tuesday, The Washington State Department of Health reported 1,180 new COVID-19 cases and seven deaths.
In total, since the outbreak began the state saw 416,930 cases and 5,593 deaths.
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