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Health and Medicine

Oregon Residents Encouraged To Stay Home As COVID Cases Increase

coronavirus2-NIH via Flickr.jpg
National Institutes of Health via Flickr

The state is imploring Oregonians to limit unnecessary travel over the holiday weekend, to stay home and avoid congregating in large groups.

UPDATE (12:28 p.m. PT) — The Oregon Health Authority Friday reported 344 new confirmed and presumptive coronavirus diagnoses, bringing the state to 9,636 known cases.

The health agency is imploring Oregonians to limit unnecessary travel over the holiday weekend, to stay home and avoid congregating in large groups.

Many of Friday's new cases are in the Portland metro area, with 59 cases in Multnomah County, 46 cases in Washington County and 22 in Clackamas County.

Another large bulk of the cases came from Umatilla County, with 49 cases reported there. Those cases are attributed both to outbreaks and community spread, the Oregon Health Authority said.

The health agency didn't report any new coronavirus-related deaths. So far, 209 people are confirmed to have died from the virus in Oregon.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown identified eight counties where COVID-19 is spreading the fastest and have the highest rates of "sporadic transmission" that don't have a clear epidemiological link to other outbreaks. Those counties  will be placed on a "watch list" and include: Jefferson, Lake, Lincoln, Malheur, Morrow, Umatilla, Union and Wasco counties.

Health officials will closely monitor those counties and prioritize resources to suppress the virus in those hotspot communities.

As of Thursday, 173 people are hospitalized with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the state, including 25 who are on ventilators. The coronavirus has led to the hospitalization of 1,069 people statewide over the course of the pandemic.

Copyright 2020 Oregon Public Broadcasting.