MEDFORD, Ore. -- Oregon counties that are experiencing 'Extreme Risk' case rates and percent positivity, can continue to remain in their 'High Risk' status, for the time being, as hospitalizations did not surpass the 300 mark last week.
On Sunday the Oregon Health Authority reported that there are 291 beds that are in use for Covid-19 patients across the state. 66 of those patients are in ICU beds.
According to Governor Kate Brown last week, Oregon has been experiencing an alarming amount of new cases and hospitalizations over the last several weeks. On Tuesday, Gov. Brown updated new county risk levels and stated that if Oregon experiences a 15% increase in the seven-day hospitalization average and patients occupy 300 hospital beds or more, that counties that qualify for 'Extreme risk' will be moved to that metric.
The other big change that Gov. Brown announced on Friday, is that if Oregon surpasses these thresholds, that counties will not be given a weeks notice before being moved into the 'Extreme Risk', as would normally be the case, and will instead by moved directly to the 'Extreme risk' status as of Friday April 30.
“As we face more contagious variants and increased spread of COVID-19 in our communities, the best way to protect yourself and others is to get vaccinated," said Governor Brown. "Until you, your family, your friends, and your neighbors are fully vaccinated, it's also critical that we all continue to wear masks, maintain physical distance, and stay home when sick.”
If Oregon does surpass 300 total beds used for Covid-19 patients, and experiences a 15% increase in the seven-day hospitalization average, Baker, Clackamas, Columbia, Crook, Deschutes, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath, Linn, Marion and Polk counties will all be moved back into the 'Extreme Risk' status.
The Oregon Health Authority will continue to examine and publish county data weekly and county risk levels will be reassigned every two weeks. The first week's data will provide a "warning week" to prepare counties for potential risk level changes. The next assignment of risk levels will be announced May 4 and take effect May 7.
On Sunday, the Oregon Health Authority reported 780 new cases of Covid-19 and one new death.
According to OHA that single new death came from Josephine County where a 95-year-old man tested positive for the virus on April 21 and died on April 24 at Asante Three Rivers Medical Center.