Nevada Casino Patrons Must Now Wear Face Masks at Table and Card Games

  • Coverings required for anyone playing at or in proximity of game and card tables with no barriers
  • Health policy amendment based on updates from Center for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Nevada Gaming Control Board requires casinos to offer masks on request, have signage notifying patrons of availability 
woman wearing face mask under las vegas welcome sign
The Nevada Gaming Control Board requires casino patrons to wear face masks at table and card games if there is no barrier between them and the dealer. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

Face masks mandatory at table and card games

Face masks are now required at casino table games without barriers in Nevada after the state’s Gaming Control Board amended its health and safety policies in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new notice to licensees, published Tuesday, calls for anyone within six feet of a casino table to wear face coverings if there is no barrier, partition, or shield between a dealer and each gambler. The requirement applies to players as well as spectators and any other person in proximity of the table or card game.

wear a face mask if there is no barrier between a dealer and a gambler

Some casinos already have these measures in place. For instance, Caesars Entertainment facilities request that patrons at Caesars Palace, Flamingo, Harrah’s Las Vegas, and The LINQ Hotel wear facial protective gear when they sit down to play at game tables. Other establishments have installed partitions at game tables and slot machines.

New measures based on CDC advice

The new measures are based on updated information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 between people who have been in close contact for at least 15 minutes.

The Nevada Gaming Control Board also requires casino licencees to offer face masks or coverings to patrons entering their establishment upon request. Alternatively, dedicated signage will need to be in place throughout the gambling premises, notifying patrons that face coverings are available.

Board initially not looking to change policy

Prior to amending its health and safety policy, the Nevada Gaming Control Board said it wasn’t reconsidering requiring face masks for casino patrons.

Chairperson Sandra Morgan indicated that she wasn’t looking to change the policy, which only recommended the use of face coverings by patrons. She added: “If that data changes and our percentage of positive cases increase, I would consider additional measures to ensure our health care system is not overburdened.”

easy to forget that we are still responding to a pandemic”

Morgan’s comment came as Fermin Leguen, the lead health care advisor on COVID-19 in Southern Nevada, stated that business customers should wear face masks to protect employees. He said: “Unfortunately, as more businesses are opening and people are beginning to resume their normal activities, it is easy to forget that we are still responding to a pandemic and precautions need to be taken.”

Since changing direction to make face coverings mandatory for patrons, the state’s Gaming Control Board said it will continue to work with casinos and health officials to help stop the spread of the virus.

Nevada welcomes back gamblers

On June 4, a number of Las Vegas casinos reopened their doors to patrons following the mid-March shutdown amid the coronavirus outbreak. However, despite health and safety measures such as face masks and social distancing, some patrons have reportedly been ignoring the advice.

Health officials have said there has been an uptick in the number of COVID-19 cases since the reopening of businesses such as casinos. However, recent protests may also have played a part, reports News 3 Las Vegas. On Monday, the number of COVID-19 cases in Nevada rose to 380.