COVID-19 update graphic

The Douglas County COVID-19 Response Team reported 13 new cases and one new death Wednesday.

The death was the county’s 39th since the pandemic’s beginning. It was of a 72-year-old man who was diagnosed with COVID-19 Nov. 20 and died Tuesday.

Douglas County’s COVID-19 case numbers remain low compared with the state and the nation overall, Douglas County Public Health Officer Bob Dannenhoffer said.

“I believe that as of yesterday, Douglas County had the lowest rate of infection for a county over 100,000 in population in the entire country,” Dannenhoffer said in a press release.

Douglas County’s population was estimated at just under 111,000 in 2019, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

There was also some good news in the Oregon Health Authority’s weekly outbreak report. There were no new cases for local nursing homes.

That’s especially good news for Curry Manor Memory Care — a facility that’s struggled to cope with 64 cases and eight deaths. No new cases or deaths were reported there this week.

It’s also good news for Forest Hill Assisted Living, formerly Forest Glen, in Canyonville. The outbreak there had previously reached 66 cases and two deaths. No new cases or deaths were reported this week.

No new cases were reported in smaller outbreaks at The Landing a Senior Living Community, or Riverview Terrace, Umpqua Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation this week either.

Among workplace outbreaks, C&D Lumber joined the list this week with five cases, the first case reported Dec. 5 and the most recent case Dec. 18.

Fred Meyer had one new case, bringing its total outbreak to nine cases.

Standing firm with no new cases were CHI Mercy Medical Center at 61 cases, Roseburg VA Medical Center at 21 cases, Sherm’s Thunderbird Market with seven cases, Ingram Book Company with six cases, and Costco with six cases.

The pandemic is taking a toll on the homeless this winter.

Tim Edmondson, director of the Roseburg Dream Center said the organization’s board voted in mid-December not to open its new facility on Diamond Lake Boulevard as a warming center because of the pandemic.

He said current state regulations would restrict the facility to 25 people including volunteers.

“My biggest dilemma is this, if I’m allowed 20 people in here and five volunteers, what do I do when number 21 comes through the door and number 30 and 40 and 50?”

He’s had more than that, as many as 137 at one time during the snowstorm two years ago.

A warming center would also risk exposure for the volunteers, most of whom are elderly, he said.

He said the number of homeless people on the streets have continued to grow. There are more people out there than he’s ever seen. They’re in tents, many out by the Duck Pond near Fred Meyer.

When it rains for days at a time like it’s expected to for the next few days everything they own becomes wet and soggy.

“If something like this happens and then it freezes, oh my gosh it’s going to be horrible,” he said.

A sign posted on the Roseburg Rescue Mission’s door Wednesday said no new guests would be admitted day or night until Jan. 4.

Roseburg Rescue Mission Executive Director Lynn Antis said the mission is not shutting down but that he had no further comment about the situation.

Samaritan Inn, a homeless shelter for women, has also closed its doors, citing concerns about an outbreak at the Eugene Mission in which 72 shelter guests and one staff member were infected.

Statewide, the Oregon Health Authority reported 1,052 new COVID-19 cases and 19 new deaths Wednesday.

So far, 138,400 Oregonians have been vaccinated for COVID-19, including 313 people in Douglas County. Currently, the vaccines are being distributed to hospital workers and residents and staff at long-term care facilities.

The Roseburg VA began vaccinating health care personnel and community living center residents last week. It’s giving the Moderna vaccine, which is what most Douglas County healthcare providers are expected to receive. It’s easier to store than the Pfizer vaccine, requiring only regular rather than ultra cold freezers.

Currently, 10 county residents are hospitalized with the illness, nine locally and one out of the area.

Reporter Carisa Cegavske can be reached at ccegavske@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4213.

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Senior Reporter

Carisa Cegavske is the senior reporter for The News-Review. She can be reached at ccegavske@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4213. Follow her on Twitter @carisa_cegavske

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(19) comments

Mike

Dr. Dannenhoffer can not be trusted. He claimed this week that, "Douglas County had the lowest rate of infection for a county over 100,000 in population in the entire country."

Douglas County has a higher rate of infection than 4 other counties in Oregon and has a higher rate of infection than literally hundreds of counties in the U.S.

https://www.oregon.gov/oha/ERD/Pages/Oregon-reports-1446-new-confirmed-and-presumptive-COVID-19-cases-13-new-deaths.aspx

Mike

94 Douglas County residents were vaccinated yesterday with their first of two doses, bringing the total to 506 Douglas County residents vaccinated since 1,595 doses of vaccine were received over the past 15 days. 506 Douglas County residents vaccinated in 15 days equates to 34 vaccinations per day. At this rate, it will take 18 years before all Douglas County residents receive their two doses.

According to the Oregon Health Authority vaccination dashboard (won't let me publish link), there are only 5 counties in Oregon that have vaccinated FEWER residents than Douglas County on a per capita basis.

Below are the number of people who have been vaccinated in the 6 counties surrounding Douglas County as of today. Only Jackson and Lane Counties have greater populations than Douglas County.

Douglas County – 506

Lane County – 3,257

Klamath County – 1,149

Jackson County – 1,925

Josephine County – 239

Coos County – 856

Curry County – 151

Mike

27 new coronavirus cases and 0 deaths were reported in today’s press release from the County Commissioners Coronavirus Task Force. This brings Douglas County totals to 1,394 cases and 39 deaths.

The Commissioners Response Team reported 150 coronavirus cases over the past two weeks which calculates to a 14-day case rate of 133.6 today for Douglas County, which is less than the case rate of 200 required for in-dining restaurants, bars, theaters and health clubs to reopen.

Mike

The County Commissioners Coronavirus Response Team reported 150 coronavirus cases and the OHA reported Douglas County received 3,433 test results over the past two weeks. Dividing 150 cases by 3,433 test results gives Douglas County a 14-day positive test rate of 4.4% today.

The six counties surrounding Douglas County reported 324 new coronavirus cases and 3 deaths today. The six counties surrounding Douglas County reported 1,299 cases and 25 deaths over the past week.

The Oregon Health Authority reported 1,649 new coronavirus cases and 9 deaths today in Oregon. Oregon’s 7-day positive test rate is 6.2% today.

The Oregon Health Authority tracks hospital statistics for seven different regions in Oregon. Region 3 consists of Douglas, Coos, Curry and Lane Counties. The OHA reported there are 17 ICU beds and 112 are non-ICU beds available in Region 3. 41 coronavirus cases are hospitalized in Region 3 today. 6 of them are in ICU. There were 156 new coronavirus cases reported in Region 3 today.

Marine Vet

Also I'd like to Point out. That 2 or 3 Of these Homeless Shelters just got BIG MONEY from the City Commissioners for Relief. ! 2 of them received Over 20,000 a piece. Then they Lock Down the Doors.? iQ45 & his Supporters have shown the Whole World 1 thing in 2020. They RIPPED OFF Thier Masks to Reveal the TRUE SELFISHNESS 7 Vile Attitudes towards Humanity. True Story Kids

mworden

Yes, people are more frail here. According to the US census: USA residents age 65+ -- 16.5. In Oregon -- 18.2. In Douglas County -- 26.3

64 of the recent cases and 8 deaths came from a memory care facility, where the patients are by definition among the most vulnerable and frail in society. 66 cases and 2 deaths came from an assisted living facility, where the residents are too frail to live without assistance.

So, yes, the percentage of frail older people is high in Douglas County because we have a higher than average older population. There's no mystery about it.

Mike

Your argument about age doesn’t hold water because there are many other counties in Oregon that have a higher population of older people than Douglas County. In addition, the percentage of older people who died in Douglas County is considerably lower than what has been documented in the state.

According to the Lane Council of Governments (below link), Douglas County’s population over the age of 65 years is 21%. There are 14 other counties in Oregon that have at least 21% of their population over the age of 65 years. How do you explain why those other 14 Oregon counties with at least the same percentage of people over the age of 65 have a lower death rate than Douglas County?

Furthermore, how do you explain that 84.1% of Oregon’s 1,468 deaths have been people 65 years old and older, while 28 of Douglas County’s 39 deaths (72%) have been people 65 years old and older?

https://www.lcog.org/1064/Counties-in-Oregon-by-Age-Group

mworden

You asked if people in Douglas County are more frail. We have a large population of frail elderly. Douglas County also usually has a poor showing in health rankings that measure things like numbers of smokers, overweight, amount of alcohol consumed and legal/illegal drug use. Last time I looked Douglas County ranked number 29 out of 36 counties. This is common knowledge among people who follow health issues.

I usually trust your facts and figures without question. However, I don't trust anyone's questions when they are framed in the most sensationalist way possible. If you have some knowledge the rest of us don't have about local dangers, please tell us about them. Perhaps you have legitimate questions to raise based on your close following of data and your willingness to do the math and to see problematic areas that others may be missing. I trust you in that area.

Unfortunately, one of the most common ploys of gossip rags and conspiracy oriented media is to raise suspicion by framing unsupported accusations as questions with the goal of arousing suspicion and causing more sensation. It's not a good strategy for reporting honest, straightforward, trustworthy information. It's a strategy I do not trust.

You also ask how do I explain the differences in the percentages of deaths among people age 65+ in the state and the county. I don't explain it because I do not have data. Trying to make explanations without data is foolish. If I hazarded a guess, I say it could be because nursing home facilities throughout the state were hit hard early on and Douglas County fared well until Halloween. But that's not a fact. It's a guess. I could also say it's a gee whiz blip in the stats that's not particularly meaningful unless you're trying to make something out of flimsy data.

If you want to post that Douglas County is the most lethal county in which to have covid, then go forward and do your thing. In my opinion, you're stretching it. You don't have to agree with me.

Mike

My comment on Douglas County being lethal was in regards to Dr. Dannenhoffer’s quote, “I believe that as of yesterday, Douglas County had the lowest rate of infection for a county over 100,000 in population in the entire country.”

How is that not “sensationalist?” I know for a fact his statement is untrue. It’s not based on “flimsy data,” because there is no data that supports his untruthful statement. There are numerous counties in the US that have a much lower rate of infection over the last month or week than Douglas County. I quit counting them because there were so many. If it was Commissioner Boice who made that false statement, you would have called him out on it like you have so many times in the past.

This is just one of 26 previous misleading or untruthful statements Dr. Dannenhoffer has made. Not once has Dr. Dannenhoffer provided data to back up his untruthful claims. I can list each comment again if you don’t believe me. NOT ONCE have I read one of your comments challenging Dr. Dannenhoffer’s misleading or untruthful comments boardering on lies. Why is that?

Who makes you the judge of sensationalism? Should a sensational quote be ignored when it is true? Newspapers draw attention to their articles every day by stating headlines in the most sensationalist way possible. As I was taught, most people’s attention is captured in the first sentence, so it needs to be good.

I state and/or share the data I use as the basis for my conclusions whenever possible, whenever the News-Review spam filter allows the link. Just because you don’t like the conclusion doesn’t mean the data is “flimsy.” Data is data. If there something wrong with the data, point out where the error is. Condemning someone’s conclusions based on style while admitting to not having the data should be beneath you. It’s lazy. It sounds more like someone who says I don’t like your conclusion and will therefore condemn it without providing supporting data. Kinda reminds me of those folks who justify not wearing a mask by saying 99.99% of people survive coronavirus. The data is out there, but they choose to espouse their belief despite data that indicates otherwise.

mworden

Oh, boy. Now you're just being mean. Not gonna go there. Happy New Year, Mike, and to all the other posters in the N-R comment section. Hope everyone is staying safe tonight.

Mike

Douglas County is the MOST lethal county to live in if you catch coronavirus. The percentage of coronavirus cases that result in death is higher in Douglas County (2.9%) than every other County in Oregon except for Wallowa County (4.0%) which has no hospital and has a population of 7,018 people and has had just 3 coronavirus deaths Compared to Douglas County’s 39 deaths.

Why is Douglas County the most lethal? Are Douglas County residents frailer than residents in other counties? Do Douglas County hospitals provide worse medical care than all other counties in Oregon? Or is it because Douglas County has the most cases of coronavirus that go unreported?

NJ

I've encouraged friends to NOT return home yet from their trip simply for the cavalier method a political party is allowing people to drop dead here. The county's a cesspool of contagious infection where doctors abdicate their responsibility to a commission who only follow their belief in the political lies of herd immunity. No prevention, no inoculation. If the powers that be could keep the stimulus from being delivered to our mail boxes, I'm quite sure they would do so with glee.

Mike

Dr. Dannenhoffer said, “Douglas County had the lowest rate of infection for a county over 100,000 in population in the entire country.” What he didn't say is Douglas County has the HIGHEST rate of death for those who contract the disease.

Keepin it Real

Mike, you should move. Far, far away. To a perfect county, where everything is rainbows and unicorns.

I think you like being so miserable that posting here is the only thing you have. I’ve not seen anyone as obsessed as you are. Well, maybe Trump, and his loony tweets.

Mike

Naw. If I did that, you would be happy.

Mike

Did the homeless man found deceased in a tent Monday morning at the Stewart Park Duck Pond die from coronavirus?

https://www.nrtoday.com/news/homeless-man-found-dead-at-stewart-park-duck-pond/article_3bfe3ec0-73d1-5369-94c2-ec070fcf300c.html

Marine Vet

Also I'd like to Point out. That 2 or 3 Of these Homeless Shelters just got BIG MONEY from the City Commissioners for Relief. ! 2 of them received Over 20,000 a piece. Then they Lock Down the Doors.? iQ45 & his Supporters have shown the Whole World 1 thing in 2020. They RIPPED OFF Thier Masks to Reveal the TRUE SELFISHNESS & Vile Attitudes towards Humanity. True Story Kid

Keepin it Real

What an ignorant question. Shows to your character.

Mike

Why is it ignorant? Wouldn't you like to know whether coronavirus is spreading among the homeless population in Roseburg? Dr. Dannenhoffer was quoted saying, "the homeless population hasn’t been affected” but later admitted he didn't know if they’ve been tested. Now that someone has died, wouldn't it be a good time to find out whether the cause was coronavirus?

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