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Josephine County moves to ‘extreme risk’ level for COVID-19 cases

Josephine County Public Health officials say the county has moved to an 'extreme risk' level for COVID-19 cases.

Posted: Nov 30, 2020 5:21 PM

JOSEPHINE COUNTY, Ore. -- Josephine County Public Health officials say the county has moved to an 'extreme risk' level for COVID-19 cases.

This means the county is seeing more than 200 case counts per 100,000 over a two-week period. 

Public health director Michael Weber says there are two things working against them right now. One of them is the cold and flu season.

"Respiratory illnesses spread more readily during this time of year," Weber said. "So, people spending more time indoors, being less likely to be at outdoor gatherings, those things just as a broad reality are going to cause -- whether it's cold, the flu or any kind of respiratory illness -- to spread more easily."

This also means when there's a spike in cases, it's not going to drop as quickly.

Weber said the other problem was Halloween.

He says following Halloween, they had a fourfold increase in cases, which resulted in a six-to-eight fold increase.

"It's not 20 to 30 people getting together from Memorial Day. It's you going out with your children, interacting with everybody on the street, going to every door -- you're interacting with hundreds of people," Weber said. "So, Halloween is really just kind of a worst case scenario for us."

Weber says they had a large spike and a decreased rate for bringing the cases back down.

"The purpose of doing something like a 'freeze' isn't to manage the illness, it's to, between events, trying to get your case rate down," Weber said.

Weber says now they're working to boost their contact tracing program.

He says they used to support other counties with their contact tracing efforts, but now they can barely keep up on the case load in Josephine County.

Weber says their goal is to get at least 20 to 30 more contact tracers.

He says contact tracing is one of the best tools they have for making sure the virus doesn't reach areas of bigger concern.

"We've actually had situations where an individual who worked at a long-term care facility went to a social gathering, was exposed to somebody -- who we were able to let them know before they took that disease back into a long-term care facility with them," Weber said. "So, avoiding that kind of exposure is really critical."

Weber says they hope people will limit the amount of social interaction and traveling that they do over the remainder of the holiday season.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 140063

Reported Deaths: 1924
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah29512473
Washington19476184
Marion16951255
Clackamas12251142
Lane8900113
Jackson726798
Umatilla705874
Deschutes530342
Yamhill335652
Linn325050
Malheur323355
Polk262241
Klamath258149
Josephine188436
Benton185514
Douglas181447
Jefferson174625
Union116117
Wasco112923
Columbia109018
Lincoln104517
Coos102916
Hood River99923
Morrow97311
Clatsop7225
Crook67615
Baker5875
Tillamook3742
Curry3275
Lake2635
Grant2171
Harney1916
Wallowa1003
Gilliam531
Sherman480
Wheeler201
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3250649

Reported Deaths: 38817
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles109171215897
San Bernardino2693141746
Riverside2684903003
Orange2403142839
San Diego2314812465
Santa Clara997021314
Kern91119591
Fresno866731084
Sacramento850621194
Alameda72024929
Ventura67526546
San Joaquin60545844
Contra Costa55593492
Stanislaus49690808
Tulare43574542
Monterey38434261
San Mateo34738356
San Francisco30874296
Santa Barbara27321267
Solano27317121
Imperial25812514
Merced25743332
Sonoma25536254
Kings20223161
Placer18129192
San Luis Obispo17151161
Madera14130175
Santa Cruz13088136
Marin12067166
Yolo11361147
Shasta10212138
Butte9943136
El Dorado824566
Napa814552
Sutter812984
Lassen530916
San Benito525152
Yuba522730
Tehama456446
Tuolumne351241
Nevada341073
Mendocino332236
Amador311333
Lake274832
Humboldt267227
Glenn203422
Colusa19079
Calaveras172323
Siskiyou150413
Mono11574
Inyo105329
Del Norte8783
Plumas6185
Modoc3974
Mariposa3585
Trinity3065
Sierra950
Alpine740
Unassigned00
Medford
Cloudy
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Hi: 40° Lo: 29°
Feels Like: 29°
Brookings
Cloudy
41° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 41°
Medford
Cloudy
33° wxIcon
Hi: 29° Lo: 12°
Feels Like: 29°
Medford
Cloudy
33° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 29°
Klamath Falls
Cloudy
34° wxIcon
Hi: 37° Lo: 24°
Feels Like: 24°
More rain and snow into Thursday
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