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Spike in Oregon COVID-19 cases tied to Union County church

A number of cases are associated with the Lighthouse Pentecostal Church in Union County, the Oregon Health Authority said.

Posted: Jun 16, 2020 12:24 PM

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon’s coronavirus cases continue to rise, with 184 new cases reported Monday -- the highest daily count in the state since the start of the pandemic.

The Oregon Health Authority says a portion of the increase is due to an outbreak in Union County in the rural northeastern part of the state, where 99 people tested positive for COVID-19. A number of cases are associated with the Lighthouse Pentecostal Church in Union County, said Dr. Paul Cieslak, medical director for infectious diseases and immunizations at the Health Authority Public Health Division.Authorities weren’t more specific about exactly how many cases were tied to the church.

Cieslak said because there were cases associated with the church, the county worked with it to host a testing clinic.

“We have been doing testing, especially targeted testing, around the places where we are starting to see clusters,” Cieslak. “The clusters cue us off where the disease transmission is going on and once you find a cluster and have a testing event like this, you find a lot of people infected.”

Cieslak said 365 people in Union County were tested over the weekend, and officials are expecting the remaining test results Tuesday.

Union County has a population of nearly 27,000 according to the U.S. Census. Prior to the latest, Union County had fewer than 25 confirmed cases during the pandemic.

“We were surprised by the number that tested positive,” Cieslak said.

The county moved into phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan, which loosens restrictions on restaurants and gatherings, June 5.

“One of our messages that we are trying to get out to the public is that large gatherings, especially in close quarters if distancing can’t be maintained, are really an efficient way in spreading COVID-19,” Cieslak said. “Whether it be in a workplace, or especially a closed assembly area, this is really a concern.”

Monday’s reported cases across the state bring the new total number of people who have tested positive for coronavirus in Oregon to 5,820. In addition, four more people have died from the disease, raising the state’s death toll to 180. The second highest daily case count in the state was 178 cases on Thursday.

In response to the increasing case counts Gov. Kate Brown last week said she was putting all county applications for further reopening from her COVID-19 restrictions on hold for seven days.

For most, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 357526

Reported Deaths: 4284
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah55810707
Washington38782324
Marion36837455
Clackamas29779309
Lane27744302
Jackson23059310
Deschutes20336125
Umatilla14492150
Linn12911131
Douglas12118243
Josephine9384196
Yamhill8715113
Klamath8020119
Polk737381
Malheur563677
Benton549431
Coos503794
Columbia382644
Jefferson376052
Lincoln319939
Union319549
Crook291846
Wasco288841
Clatsop244328
Baker203529
Tillamook196932
Hood River192837
Morrow185023
Curry180625
Harney113927
Grant100013
Lake93912
Wallowa68612
Gilliam1544
Sherman1523
Wheeler1121
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4848946

Reported Deaths: 71328
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles148303126527
Riverside3716705041
San Diego3666614183
San Bernardino3586775692
Orange3242885562
Sacramento1596362309
Kern1463481648
Fresno1463182094
Santa Clara1455431897
Alameda1206921400
San Joaquin1027761721
Ventura1010381167
Contra Costa1000181008
Stanislaus862991335
Tulare80375978
San Francisco54440649
San Mateo54168623
Monterey50911586
Solano46063341
Santa Barbara45223523
Merced42422581
Sonoma40997404
Placer39435429
Imperial36071766
Kings32938325
San Luis Obispo29973333
Madera23955285
Shasta23924352
Butte23818273
Santa Cruz21034221
Yolo20397248
Marin17706244
El Dorado17207149
Sutter13937175
Napa12898100
Yuba1011582
Tehama9534110
Humboldt9269109
Nevada916790
Mendocino766787
Lassen754347
San Benito744972
Tuolumne691790
Lake6631105
Amador547364
Siskiyou451246
Glenn438433
Calaveras391481
Del Norte358742
Colusa307618
Inyo214241
Mono16723
Plumas16607
Mariposa133916
Trinity88011
Modoc6895
Sierra1880
Unassigned1460
Alpine1050
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