MarionCo needs 22k more new vaccinations for risk level change


County ranks third in Oregon for most people still needing vaccinations

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Health officials with Marion County said Tuesday they are likely four weeks away from being downgraded to “Lower Risk” status in the state’s COVID-19 reopening process.

Counties in Oregon are allowed to move to Lower Risk when 65% or more of residents 16 and older have at least one dose of the vaccine. And although Marion County ranks 12th overall in the state for the number of people who are vaccinated, it sits as the third highest when it comes to the number of people left that needed to get a shot for entry into the Lower Risk status.

For Marion County to reach the 65% benchmark, 22,000 more people need to get a shot, according to health officials. Right now, about 57% are vaccinated. Roughly 700 people in Marion County would have to get a shot each day for the county to reach the 65% goal by June 30.

Public Health Division Director Katrina Rothenberger said the county is continuing its effort to get the word out about vaccinations.

“We’ve done so much advertising, we’ve done a lot through our public health department, and health care partners,” she told KOIN 6 News Tuesday. “But, I think people seeing their friends and family getting immunized and being ok–and going getting to do the things they enjoy again–is really helpful.”

Rothernburger added that the county has partnered with community organizations, hosted mobile clinics and have plans to launch a new campaign with Univision for people hesitant to get vaccinated.

Risk level changes this Friday

On Tuesday, Oregon Governor Kate Brown announced updates to county risk levels. From June 4 through June 10, there will be 13 counties in High Risk, four at Moderate Risk and 19 at Lower Risk. Clatsop County moves down to Lower Risk, while Lane and Polk counties move down to Moderate Risk.

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