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Jackson County reports record number of COVID-19 cases

Jackson County reported 28 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, the most in a single day since the pandemic began.

The county had 27 cases Oct. 1.

Wednesday’s new cases bring the county’s total to 1,413 cases with six deaths.

Statewide, the Oregon Health Authority reported 390 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases and three more deaths.

A 93-year-old man in Multnomah County, an 80-year-old woman in Wasco County and an 82-year-old woman in Washington County passed away. All had underlying conditions, OHA said.

Oregon has reported 38,160 cases and 608 deaths.

With a string of holidays approaching — including Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s — public health officials are urging people to take precautions to reduce the risk of catching or spreading the virus.

They recommend taking part in low-risk activities and limiting or avoiding higher-risk activities. People should get a flu vaccine and continue to wear a mask, maintain physical distancing and wash their hands frequently, public health officials said.

Symptoms of the flu can be hard to distinguish from COVID-19. There is no vaccine yet for COVID-19.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said several factors contribute to COVID-19 infection risk at a holiday celebration. In combination, they create various levels of risk, so people should consider them individually and together.

  • Community levels of COVID-19: Higher numbers of cases and community spread in the gathering location, as well as where attendees are coming from, increase the risk of infection among attendees. Family and friends should consider the number and rate of COVID-19 cases in their community and in the community where they plan to celebrate when considering whether to host or attend a holiday celebration. Gatherings with people from different areas pose more risk of spreading infection than gatherings of people from the same area.
  • Location of the gathering: Indoor gatherings generally pose more risk than outdoor gatherings. Indoor gatherings with poor ventilation pose more risk than those with good ventilation, such as those with open windows or doors.
  • Duration of the gathering: Gatherings that last longer pose more risk than shorter gatherings.
  • Number of people at the gathering: Gatherings with more people pose more risk.
  • Behavior of attendees prior to the gathering: Gatherings with attendees who haven’t been adhering to social distancing, mask-wearing, hand-washing and other preventative measures pose more risk than gatherings with attendees who have been following such measures.
  • Behavior during the gathering: Gatherings with more preventative measures in place, such as mask-wearing, social distancing and hand-washing, pose less risk than gatherings where few or no preventive measures are being taken.

According to the CDC, some people should not attend in-person holiday celebrations with people outside their households. They include:

  • People who are at increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19, or who live or work with someone at high risk.
  • Anyone who’s been diagnosed with COVID-19 and hasn’t met the criteria for when it’s safe to be around others.
  • Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19, which can include fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion, runny noise, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.
  • People waiting for a COVID-19 virus test results.
  • People who may have been exposed to the virus in the past 14 days.

For more advice from the CDC about holiday gatherings, see www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Vickie Aldous at valdous@rosebudmedia.com. Follow her on Twitter @VickieAldous.

Jackson County reported a record number of COVID-19 cases Wednesday.