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Jackson County off state COVID-19 watch list

Jackson County moved off Oregon’s COVID-19 watch list, which is reserved for counties that have a surge in sporadic cases that can’t be traced to a known source.

Gov. Kate Brown also announced Jefferson County’s removal from the list, along with Umatilla County’s upgrade to a phase two reopening, according to a Friday press release.

“Their work in reducing community transmission shows that we can reduce the spread of this disease if we all work together,” Brown said.

Jackson County was added to the watch list three weeks ago. Counties stay on the for a minimum of three weeks while state health officials help the county boost its monitoring, communication and contact tracing until numbers drop below five sporadic cases or 50 sporadic cases per 100,000 people.

From Aug. 2-16, Jackson County had 118 sporadic cases or 53.3 cases per 100,000 people, public health officials reported.

Counties that don’t show improvement can revert back to earlier reopening phases.

Jackson County Public Health reported seven new cases of COVID-19 Friday, pushing the local total to 943. Of those, 147 are considered active infectious cases.

Seventy people have been hospitalized, and three deaths from the illness have been reported in Jackson County.

Two more Oregon deaths were reported Friday, with 215 new cases recorded statewide, pushing the state totals to 28,865 cases and 499 deaths.