A ninth Douglas County resident has died from COVID-19.
Douglas County Public Health Officer Bob Dannenhoffer said the 81-year-old woman died Wednesday morning due in part to complications from COVID-19. She had tested positive for the illness and had been hospitalized since Oct. 10. The county provided no further information about her, citing privacy concerns.
The Douglas County COVID-19 Response Team reported 12 new cases Wednesday, including 10 positive and two presumptive.
And another local business, Clint Newell Motors, has now been added to the Oregon Health Authority’s workplace outbreak list, with five positive or presumed COVID-19 cases.
Owner Clint Newell disputed the OHA’s conclusion.
He said one Clint Newell Motors employee tested positive on Oct. 31, after taking a family member to the Roseburg Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Newell said after that visit, the employee and two other family members returned positive tests.
“Technically, it’s incorrect,” Newell said of the state’s Wednesday report. “(The employee) didn’t contract it here.”
The OHA includes additional contacts of infected employees toward a workplace’s outbreak total.
The VA currently lists no employee cases and seven patient cases. The OHA lists the VA as having 13 cases, with the last one being on Oct. 19.
Tim Parish, VA spokesperson, said they have no outbreak there.
“It’s important to note that no Veterans have contracted coronavirus while receiving direct inpatient care at an RVAHCS facility due to effective safety protocols that have protected our most vulnerable Veteran population,” he said in an email.
The rest of the OHA list provided mixed news for Douglas County. While CHI Mercy Medical Center and Roseburg Forest Products-Riddle plant came off the authority’s active list, two assisted living and care facilities saw new cases added.
Umpqua Valley Nursing & Rehabilitation had one new case, bringing its total to 12. The health authority also reported two new cases at Timber Town Living in Sutherlin, as well as two deaths traced to the facility.
Neither facility returned a request for comment.
The Roseburg Forest Products-Dillard plant had no additional cases reported by the OHA Wednesday, with their last case listed as reported Oct. 9. With no further cases reported, the plant would come off of the “active” list effective Friday.
Evergreen Family Medicine in Roseburg also saw no increase from last week’s report, with its last reported case on Oct. 20.
Nearly 400 Douglas County residents are now either isolated or quarantined. Sixty-one who returned positive tests are being monitored in isolation as active cases, while an additional 338 presumptive positives are presently in quarantine, according to the Douglas County COVID-19 Response Team.
“Our team has been has been incredibly active. Their job doesn’t stop. The prevention measures have been around for a long time, and they haven’t changed,” spokesperson Tamara Howell said.
“We are all tired of COVID, tired of social distancing and tired of talking about this pandemic,” the county’s response team said in Wednesday’s update. “But, the truth is that this virus is not going away anytime soon. Residents should prepare for a long winter with continued recommendations for following virus spread prevention measures.”
Those measures include regular hand-washing, social distancing, and wearing masks in public.
The Oregon Health Authority reported 597 new positive and presumptive cases in its Wednesday update, as well as four deaths. Those who died ranged in age from 69 to 98 years of age, and three of the four had confirmed underlying health conditions.
When Douglas County first started reporting COVID-19 numbers in March, there were 189 cases in the first 190 days. In the past seven weeks, the county has averaged four cases per day.
Six of the county’s nine COVID-19 deaths have happened in the past two months.