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Gov. Brown says Extreme Risk counties can move back to High Risk on Friday

Governor Kate Brown announced on Tuesday that the 15 Oregon counties under Extreme Risk will be able to step back down after a week on the heightened restrictions.

Posted: May 4, 2021 5:18 PM
Updated: May 4, 2021 6:20 PM

SALEM, Ore. — Governor Kate Brown announced on Tuesday that the 15 Oregon counties currently on Extreme Risk status will be able to step back down after a week on the heightened restrictions — a move that will apply to Jackson, Josephine, and Klamath counties.

The change will go into effect on Friday, May 7, allowing the counties that jumped to Extreme Risk last Friday to resume High Risk status. In all, 24 Oregon counties will be at High Risk, four at Moderate, and eight at Lower Risk (see the full list here).

In a statement, Brown's office said that the seven-day average increase for hospitalized COVID-19 patients dropped below 15 percent, putting the state below the threshold outlined in early April. She said she does not anticipate that any counties will return to the state's highest level of restrictions "for the duration of this pandemic."

According to the Oregon Health Authority's latest update, COVID-19 hospitalizations have not significantly dropped, only plateaued. The agency currently lists 345 hospitalized COVID-19 patients, with 79 in intensive care. Officials triggered the move to Extreme Risk for counties with high rate of spread after the state surpassed 300 hospitalized patients.

OHA said that the total number of COVID-19 positive patient "bed days" over the last week was 2,371, a 14.9 increase over the previous seven days — and just under the 15 percent wire established in early April.


RELATED: Gov. Brown defends Extreme Risk decision: 'As your Governor, I chose to save lives'


Stepping down to High Risk is a significant development — and no doubt a bewildering one — for restaurants and other businesses in counties that were under Extreme Risk restrictions since last Friday. It means that restaurants can reopen indoor dining, while venues and fitness establishments can increase capacity again.

Governor Brown accompanied the announcement with the following statement:


“Let me be clear: across the state, COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are still high, and Oregon is not out of the woods yet. However, we have met the hospitalization metric established by our health experts for counties to return to High Risk. From the beginning, I have said that returning counties to the Extreme Risk level was about preserving hospital capacity and saving lives. With our statewide hospitalization rate stabilizing, our hospitals should have the capacity to continue treating patients with severe cases of COVID-19 and other serious medical conditions in the coming weeks.

“Based on today’s numbers, I am keeping my commitment to Oregonians. Beginning Friday, all counties in Extreme Risk will return to High Risk. With Oregonians continuing to get vaccinated each week, my expectation is that we will not return to Extreme Risk again for the duration of this pandemic.

“I know this will bring relief to many across the state. However, the lifting of Extreme Risk health and safety measures comes with great personal responsibility for us all. If Oregonians continue to keep up their guard, follow High Risk health and safety measures, and get vaccinated as fast as possible, we should see our COVID-19 case and hospitalization rates decline. I’d like to thank Oregonians for taking this surge seriously for the last several weeks. It’s because of you that our hospitals have not been overwhelmed.

“Today, we also received the welcome news from the Biden-Harris administration that they will be reallocating unused vaccines to the states that need them. Oregon will ask for the maximum allowed, which will help us to get shots in arms faster. Vaccinations are still our best path to protecting our loved ones, and staying on track to fully reopen our economy by the end of June.”

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 206777

Reported Deaths: 2754
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah40354614
Washington26781248
Marion23425323
Clackamas18925235
Lane13896164
Jackson11535146
Deschutes1001582
Umatilla859387
Linn560380
Yamhill477879
Klamath477678
Polk399356
Douglas387982
Malheur361463
Josephine359872
Benton326422
Jefferson236839
Coos216637
Columbia191929
Union149824
Wasco144330
Lincoln143021
Crook129223
Hood River121933
Morrow115316
Clatsop10559
Baker101115
Curry70811
Tillamook6604
Grant5507
Lake4678
Harney4339
Wallowa1945
Gilliam801
Sherman671
Wheeler351
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3808258

Reported Deaths: 63335
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles124761824454
Riverside3016034627
San Bernardino2992894844
San Diego2817493771
Orange2729225112
Santa Clara1201102188
Kern1107821404
Sacramento1076381731
Fresno1029221724
Alameda895921273
Ventura816381031
San Joaquin746861438
Contra Costa70561813
Stanislaus633871069
Tulare49814849
Monterey43831427
San Mateo42646581
San Francisco37256556
Santa Barbara34596455
Solano33707266
Merced32291478
Sonoma30868317
Imperial28813741
Placer23537299
Kings23189247
San Luis Obispo21421261
Madera16632245
Santa Cruz16235208
Marin14200230
Yolo14156212
Butte12659194
Shasta12630233
El Dorado10371116
Napa1002580
Sutter9656113
Yuba648551
San Benito610963
Lassen578424
Tehama573163
Nevada491075
Humboldt446348
Mendocino432150
Tuolumne420771
Amador373947
Lake356345
Glenn243427
Siskiyou239437
Colusa228418
Calaveras220156
Del Norte14568
Inyo143438
Mono12954
Plumas7366
Modoc5585
Mariposa4657
Trinity4225
Sierra1150
Alpine890
Unassigned330
Medford
Clear
74° wxIcon
Hi: 98° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 74°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
50° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 50°
Crater Lake
Clear
74° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 74°
Grants Pass
Partly Cloudy
74° wxIcon
Hi: 98° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 74°
Klamath Falls
Clear
71° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 71°
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