The Oregon Health Authority reported 268 new confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases and five deaths Friday, bringing the state’s total to 27,601 cases and 475 deaths.
The report comes as state officials released new modeling that shows current transmission rates have fallen to the point where every coronavirus case will generate less than one other case.
“This is tremendous progress, but it will only continue if we keep up the pressure,” said state epidemiologist Dr. Dean Sidelinger. “We cannot ease up and allow Labor Day social gatherings to send our rate back up. This virus remains extremely contagious and spreads very quickly. It would not take much for cases to rise again.”
In a press conference on Friday, Gov. Kate Brown and public health officials said cases in Oregon have continued to drop since late July and stressed that Oregonians need to keep wearing masks, physical distancing and hand-washing. Brown pleaded with residents to refrain from celebrating the Labor Day weekend in ways that will fuel the spread of the disease.
Gatherings on Mother’s Day, Memorial Day weekend and the Fourth of July weekend caused new cases to spike.
“We cannot have that happen again,” said Patrick Allen, director of the Oregon Health Authority. “We simply cannot celebrate this Labor Day and all the holidays coming up in the fall and winter in the way we’ve celebrated them in the past.”
Brown said infections still need to drop before schools in all parts of the state can reopen.
“Please don’t let your fatigue with these restrictions take us away from our collective goal of reducing infections and preventing deaths,” Brown said.
Where the new cases are by county: Benton (4), Clackamas (18), Clatsop (1), Coos (1), Crook (2), Curry (1), Deschutes (2), Hood River (2), Jackson (12), Jefferson (1), Josephine (6), Lake (2), Lane (22), Linn (5), Malheur (31), Marion (44), Morrow (6), Multnomah (43), Polk (3), Tillamook (2), Umatilla (32), Union (1), Wasco (2), Washington (23), and Yamhill (2).
New fatalities: A 43-year-old man in Clackamas County is Oregon’s 471st COVID-19 death. He tested positive Aug. 12 and died Aug. 26 at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center. He had unspecified underlying health conditions.
A 52-year-old man in Multnomah County is Oregon’s 472nd COVID-19 death. He tested positive Aug. 25 and died Sept. 2 at Legacy Emanuel Medical Center. He had unspecified underlying health conditions.
A 73-year-old man in Multnomah County is Oregon’s 473rd COVID-19 death. He tested positive Aug. 13 and died Sept. 1 at Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center. He had unspecified underlying health conditions.
A 56-year-old woman in Washington County is Oregon’s 474th COVID-19 death. She tested positive July 15 and died Sept. 3 at Oregon Health and Science University. She had unspecified underlying health conditions.
An 87-year-old woman in Multnomah County is Oregon’s 475th COVID-19 death. She tested positive April 16 and died July 18 in her home. She had unspecified underlying health conditions. State officials reported that the woman’s death certificate listed COVID-19 disease as a cause of death or a significant condition contributing to her death.
Prevalence of infection: Since Thursday, state officials reported that 5,792 Oregonians had been tested for the coronavirus, with 253 coming back positive, equaling a positivity rate of 4.4%.
Who got infected: Since Thursday, state officials reported 265 new cases among the following ages: 0-9 (21); 10-19 (32); 20-29 (43); 30-39 (47); 40-49 (41); 50-59 (45); 60-69 (15); 70-79 (14); 80 and older (7).
Who’s in the hospital: State officials reported Friday that 91 Oregonians are currently hospitalized with confirmed cases of COVID-19, four more than yesterday. Hundreds of hospital beds and ventilators remain available.
Since it began: State officials have reported 27,601 confirmed and presumptive coronavirus cases since the pandemic began. In total, 575,596 Oregonians have been tested.
— Bryce Dole; email@example.com; 541-660-9844; @DoleBryce