Washington County to drop to ‘lower risk’ level on Friday, May 21


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Washington County to transition from “high risk” to “low risk” status on Friday, May 21 after reaching a 65% first-dose vaccination goal for those 16 and older, Governor Kate Brown announced Tuesday. after 4 p.m.

File photo: Chas Hundley

Washington County will be upgraded from “high risk” to “low risk” status on Friday, May 21 after reaching a first-dose vaccination rate of 65% for people 16 years of age and older, the government said on Tuesday. Governor Kate Brown after 4 p.m.

Washington County is one of five counties that have requested to be upgraded to the low-risk level under the framework, a move that will significantly reduce restrictions on the number of people allowed in stores, restaurants, gyms, entertainment facilities , will allow indoor contact sports to resume, allow churches and other religious activities to enable larger groups of people, and more.

The complete list of county risk levels and associated restrictions can be found here.

Other counties that will see the restrictions relaxed are Benton, Deschutes, Hood River and Lincoln counties. Multnomah County chose not to research the lower risk level, although it likely hit the threshold for enough vaccinations.

“Vaccines protect you and they protect everyone around you,” Brown said in a statement. “It will take all of us working together to ensure that enough Oregon’s are vaccinated to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities and end this pandemic. I want to thank everyone in these counties, especially their remarkable public health officials, healthcare workers and volunteers who have led the way in ensuring their communities are protected from COVID-19. “

State figures have changed several times in the past few days, first due to an error by the Oregon Health Authority after inadvertently grouping people under the age of 16 who had received a dose of a vaccine in the 16-19 age group. Now the numbers have changed again in favor of the county.

“Preliminary data released Monday by the Oregon Health Authority did not include federal vaccine doses administered in counties,” a statement read.

It was these doses that put Washington County in the green. Current statistics posted by the OHA do not include federal doses, and show the county still at 64.3% as of Tuesday morning.

Each of the five counties moving to Lower Risk also submitted equity plans to the state to address immunization gaps among ethnic and minority groups.

County plan to close equity gaps

“This plan describes Washington County’s efforts to close the immunization equity gap between communities of color and other underserved community members. We are committed to continuing and adjusting these efforts until we close the gap, ”the opening statement of the plan demanded by the state of Washington County reads.

The ten-page document describes how the county plans to tackle the declining rate of vaccine adoption for several minority and ethnic groups. Native Hawaiian / Pacific Islander residents have the highest vaccination rate at 55.1%, followed by Asian residents with 49.5%, White residents with 46.9%, Native American / Alaskan residents with 46.2%, Hispanic / Latinox residents with 33.3% and Blacks. residents at 31.7%, according to data compiled May 18 from the OHA.

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