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Coronavirus Watch: Josephine County Public Health calls for caution after COVID-19 cases rise again

Coronavirus cases in southwest Oregon had been falling for weeks, but public health officials say they went back up last week in Josephine County.

Posted: Oct 19, 2021 10:22 AM
Updated: Oct 19, 2021 10:28 AM

GRANTS PASS, Ore. — Coronavirus cases in southwest Oregon have been trending downward for weeks after peaking in the midst of the late-summer Delta variant surge. In spite of those trends, Josephine County Public Health called for renewed caution on Tuesday, noting that cases rose again last week — marking the end of a 7-week decline.

For the week ending October 16, Josephine County Public Health reported 149 new cases of COVID-19 among residents, up from 137 the week before. Before last week, the number of cases each week had been dropping progressively from the high of 876 reached during the week of August 15 through 21.

Public Health officials said that this should serve as a reminder that COVID-19 is still spreading in the community — and while mitigation strategies like wearing masks and social distancing help, receiving a free vaccination is the best way to protect residents and their families.


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“Vaccination is the strongest tool we have available and requires only intermittent effort; I know that masks, physical distancing and limiting social gatherings are ongoing efforts that can get tiring,” said Dr. Leona O’Keefe, JCPH deputy health officer. “Unfortunately, COVID-19 does not pay attention to how tired we are with it, so we must continue our efforts to limit its spread for the sake of protecting our community, especially when we are in a time of high transmission, such as now.”

In Josephine County, COVID-19 cases declined by 20% during the week of October 3 through 9 and increased by 8% the following week. JCPH said that more than 65% of local COVID-19 cases are younger than 50, and 31% of hospitalized cases are younger than 60.

“COVID-19 was a top-10 cause of death in the United States for all age groups in August and September of this year,” O’Keefe said, “and it was the number-one cause of death in those age 35-54 for the same time period. That same age group represents the highest rate of infection in Josephine County.”

As of Oct. 18, 57.9% of Josephine County residents aged 18 and older had received at least one COVID-19 vaccine.

Josephine County residents can visit the county public health website to schedule an appointment for vaccination, or call the Josephine County COVID-19 Call Center at (541) 916-7030 to ask questions, schedule a vaccine appointment, or schedule a testing appointment.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 392197

Reported Deaths: 5186
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah60432839
Washington42082398
Marion39986507
Clackamas32861382
Lane30179358
Jackson24956361
Deschutes23639185
Umatilla15135182
Linn14704179
Douglas13438292
Josephine10201246
Yamhill9787143
Klamath9072147
Polk8248102
Benton611138
Malheur592790
Coos5693107
Columbia433356
Jefferson420866
Lincoln363852
Union339255
Crook336356
Wasco317046
Clatsop262735
Baker220833
Tillamook217045
Hood River214537
Morrow197825
Curry192439
Harney119933
Grant108515
Lake105616
Wallowa76013
Sherman1913
Gilliam1854
Wheeler1141
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 5087907

Reported Deaths: 74561
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles152858627184
San Diego4074794340
Riverside3880835358
San Bernardino3748555967
Orange3346265736
Sacramento1684922447
Kern1578751804
Fresno1568972259
Santa Clara1522681929
Alameda1252361507
San Joaquin1076041834
Ventura1040841191
Contra Costa1038691046
Stanislaus915481417
Tulare861371099
San Francisco56931672
San Mateo56354629
Monterey52521626
Solano47693358
Santa Barbara47345553
Merced45086668
Sonoma43207412
Placer42204470
Imperial38516773
Kings35221362
San Luis Obispo31511360
Madera26233311
Shasta26113458
Butte25476318
Santa Cruz22268224
Yolo21590260
Marin18495249
El Dorado18325166
Sutter14577186
Napa13424105
Yuba1076389
Tehama10282130
Humboldt10183119
Nevada10029105
Mendocino857799
Lassen797656
San Benito782979
Tuolumne774691
Lake7046110
Amador578366
Siskiyou475855
Glenn457436
Calaveras442288
Del Norte376942
Colusa325921
Inyo256746
Plumas19397
Mono18924
Mariposa160718
Trinity99817
Modoc7725
Sierra2180
Alpine1080
Unassigned810
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