Josephine County has worst COVID death rate in Oregon


Southwestern Oregon counties' death rate is 17 time greater than tri-county region

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Over the last 7 days Oregon reported more than 15,600 new cases of COVID-19, the 9th straight week of rising cases. But this week there was an increase of only 68 cases from last week’s total.

Hospitalizations are up 7% and the number of new vaccinations administered dropped slightly. That’s the first time in 6 weeks new vaccinations dipped.

While the number of new cases is slowing down, the death toll is still rising sharply in counties with lower vaccination rates.

In the tri-county area, 77% of all adults are now vaccinated. Since July 13, the death counts are less than 3.5 per 100,000 people. Combined in the metro counties, the rate is 2.2 people died of COVID for every 100,000 people.

But in the most populous counties in southwestern Oregon — where vaccine rates are far lower — the story is much more grim. Only 57% of adults have been vaccinated in those counties and the death rate since July 13 is far greater in these counties.

In Josephine County, 60.1 people are dying of COVID for every 100,000 residents — the worst death rate in the entire state.

On Saturday, Josephine County released information on the deaths of their most recent COVID fatalitis, including a 25-year-old unvaccinated woman who had underlying conditions.

Josephine County officials said they now have a total of 145 COVID-related deaths. Of those patients, 144 died from complications relating to COVID infections. Of the 145 COVID-19 patients who died, 129 were unvaccinated.

Combined, the southwestern counties of Oregon have a COVID death rate 17 times greater than they more vaccinated metro tri-counties.

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