Around the world casinos are still dealing with COVID issues despite being able to maintain their business. Issues include dealing with mask restrictions and enforced vaccinations for staff, building delays and investing in air purifying systems

1. Las Vegas: MGM Resorts requiring proof of vaccination from employees — or weekly COVID-19 tests for $15

MGM Resorts employees are being required to provide proof of vaccination or begin getting weekly COVID-19 tests — that they have to pay for.

That’s according to current employees, who received an email from “” on Monday — that’s the email account used to generate messages to employees.

Employees are required to upload a photo of their vaccine card or begin paying $15 for weekly tests.

The requirement moves beyond efforts to require employees to wear masks, which went into effect last week.


2. Potential delays flagged to completion of US$3.3 billion Marina Bay Sands expansion

Las Vegas Sands says it remains unsure whether it can meet its current 2025 deadline for completion of the SG$4.5 billion (US$3.3 billion) expansion of Singapore integrated resort Marina Bay Sands.

COO Patrick Dumont said it was facing lengthy delays as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which had prevented the progress of certain works on the MBS site through most of 2021.

The substantial project will see the development of a fourth hotel tower with a “rooftop attraction” including a sky pool and signature restaurant, MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions)  facilities comprising meeting rooms, function rooms and exhibition halls plus a state-of-the-art live entertainment arena with a seating capacity of at least 15,000 people.

MBS first announced its expansion plans in April 2019 after reaching an agreement with the government that included making a one-off SG$1.5 billion (US$1.1 billion) payment.

In return, MBS will be granted a provision to install an additional 1,000 gaming machines, taking its total to 3,500, and convert the entire 55th floor of Hotel Tower 1 into more casino floor space with a provision to purchase another 2,000 square meters of casino gaming area if required.


3. Nevada’s updated mask requirements effective July 30, 2021

Starting Friday, everyone in Nevada will have to wear a mask indoors again, whether you’re vaccinated or not.

This follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s new guidelines issued on Tuesday. The CDC says people living in areas with a high transmission rate of the virus, like Nevada, are urged to wear masks regardless of vaccination status.

Some COVID-19 hotspots like San Francisco, Seattle and New York are taking it a step further and requiring staff and customers to be vaccinated

In Southern Nevada, that’s not currently a requirement.

4. Osage Casinos installs new air purifying system to kill COVID-19

Osage Casinos announced Thursday it will install an air purification system it says can kill the COVID-19 virus at a nearly 100% rate.

The system, known as Needlepoint Bipolar Ionization, has already been installed at properties in Tulsa, Ponca City, Skiatook, and Sand Springs.

“At Osage Casinos, the health of our guests and staff is an extremely high priority, and I’m proud of our team for continuing to innovate,” said Byron Bighorse, CEO, in a press release. “We’ve moved quickly from day one to institute new procedures and software that help reduce the spread of COVID-19, and this is another crucial addition to that mission.”

A lab test from a third party found that the new system eliminated the virus at a rate of 99.4% on stagnant surfaces, according to a press release. The system was also found to kill MRSA (golden staph), E. coli, and mould spores.

The casino says the NPBITM technology has been used nationally by institutions such as the White House and Mayo Clinic.