COVID-19 update graphic

While positive coronavirus cases saw a significant drop Sunday and Monday, the Douglas County COVID-19 Recovery Team announced seven new deaths in its Monday report.

Three of those deaths were reportedly from earlier in September, including a 32-year-old man who died Sept. 5 and indications of the coronavirus were discovered post-mortem. Of the seven deaths reported Monday, six were reportedly unvaccinated.

“We thoroughly scrutinize and investigate all deaths and review all medical records to make sure that everyone we report has met the requirements for a COVID-19-related death as per the Oregon Disease Investigative Guidelines for COVID-19,” the team said in Monday’s release.

After reporting 169 new positive and presumptive cases Saturday, the team announced that there were just 14 such cases Sunday and 38 Monday.

As of Monday, 92 Douglas County residents were hospitalized due to complications from the coronavirus. Of those, 86 were reportedly not vaccinated. There are 61 residents being cared for locally and 31 out of the area. Of those being cared for at CHI Mercy Medical Center, 14 were on ventilators and 12 were receiving non-invasive breathing assistance. There were 14 patients in the hospital’s intensive care unit and nine in the progressive care unit.

Also Monday, the Oregon Health Authority reported 4,700 new confirmed and presumptive cases between Friday and Sunday, with 32 deaths.

Donovan Brink can be reached at dbrink@nrtoday.com and 541-957-4219.

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Cops and Courts Reporter

Donovan Brink is the cops and courts reporter for The News-Review.

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(25) comments

Mike

Oregon’s second-largest high school closes due to COVID-19 spread.

https://www.oregonlive.com/coronavirus/2021/09/oregons-second-largest-high-school-temporarily-closes-due-to-covid-19-spread.html

Mike

Vaccinated Americans are cutting ties with unvaccinated family members and friends, poll finds.

https://www.oregonlive.com/nation/2021/09/vaccinated-americans-are-cutting-ties-with-unvaccinated-family-members-and-friends-poll-finds.html

Mike

In just three weeks, six unvaccinated members of a Florida family died after contracting COVID-19.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/six-unvaccinated-members-of-florida-family-die-of-covid-19/ar-AAOtHhm?li=BBnb7Kz

Mike

Our Douglas County Commissioners just reported 12 more Covid deaths over the past two days. 11 of the 12 were NOT vaccinated.

That makes it 27 avoidable Covid deaths in the past week alone for Douglas County.

Mike

4 of the deaths occurred over a week ago and are only now being reported.

Mike

Correction: 11 deaths. 10 of 11 NOT vaccinated.

Mike

Medical Boards Threaten Doctors Spreading COVID Misinformation With Decertification.

Is the award winning News-Review going to report whether high profile Douglas County doctors are under investigation for their misinformation blogs or must we rely upon Eugene’s Oregonian newspaper for that news?

The Oregonian recently reported Evergreen Family Medicine was sanctioned by OSHA for failing to enforce mask mandates after receiving complaints from employees. This was NOT something that was reported by the award winning News-Review.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/health-news/medical-boards-threaten-doctors-spreading-covid-misinformation-with-decertification/ar-AAOrLdg

dejadoodoo

Evergreen is my doctor office. I saw my fair share of mask "liberties" in the front office in the past 12 to 14 months. I saw flimsy cloth masks (near see-through fabrics), masks not covering noses, and naked faces behind those worthless protective shields. Those shields might protect the wearer if someone spits on them, but that's all they were made for, and all they are good for.

As is normal in situations like this, it's easier to recall the few bad vs. the many good. That said, I'm not surprised a few employees blew the whistle.

Mike

A record-high 2,544 children were hospitalized with Covid-19 on September 10, according to data from the US Department of Health and Human Services.

An average of 341 pediatric Covid-19 patients were admitted to hospitals every day during the week ending September 12, according to data from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

At least 529 children have died from Covid-19, according to CDC data.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/health/health-news/delta-variant-in-kids-every-day-hundreds-of-children-are-getting-hospitalized-with-covid-19-that-s-not-the-only-reason-to-protect-kids-from-delta-doctors-say/ar-AAOeOME

Mike

COVID surge pushes much of Idaho toward medical rationing. Turns out Douglas County is a perfect match for Idaho.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/covid-surge-pushes-much-of-idaho-toward-medical-rationing/ar-AAOrN5i

mworden

Roseburg doctor says Covid surge is different: 'More complications and more suffering'

https://nbc16.com/news/local/roseburg-doctor-says-covid-surge-is-different-more-complications-and-more-suffering

melrosereader

Off topic, but I keep coming back to the same conclusion: In 1861, we should have let the South go. Now, since the South's ideology has metastasized throughout the country, our mistake becomes clearer by the day.

Mike

3 more Douglas County Covid deaths were reported today by the Oregon Health Authority (below link), bringing the death total to 176. There also were 102 Covid cases reported today.

Douglas County has led all other counties in per capita Covid deaths since the first week in August. No other County had more per capita Covid deaths than Douglas County.

Oregon reported 2,028 new cases today and 44 deaths.

https://www.oregon.gov/oha/covid19/Documents/DataReports/Oregon-COVID-19-Update-09-14-2021-FINAL.pdf

sectorstar

A co-worker told me the other day that her two middle school aged children no longer want to ride the bus to school due to the conditions of it. Due to a shortage of bus drivers, it seems like what used to be 2-3 bus routes that would have each had their own bus is now being combined into a single bus resulting in the buses being filled to max capacity with every seat having 3 kids in it. When I got to Jr high when we had started to grow and needed to carry more with us in our back packs like school books for different classes, having 2 kids in a seat was cramped sometimes, so I can only imagine 3 kids. And yet people are dumbfounded as to why theres a sudden massive influx of kids coming down with covid? I can't comment or not as to if the kids have masks on or not while on the bus, but where I work at Costco I think its safe to say I easily see well over 100 kids a day, usually only less than 10 (if any at all) I see with a mask on. I know theres plenty of adults here that aren't taking health and safety into account right now with the virus, but doing these kind of things with children surely is not helping anything.

Mike

Dozens more students quarantined in latest Oregon school bus COVID-19 incident; parents ask ‘how this makes sense’?

40 children on a Duniway Elementary School bus route were told to quarantine last week after riding with at least one student infected with the coronavirus, marking at least the second busing incident to force dozens of kids to miss more than a week of school.

This highlights the dramatically different standards used by schools to determine when unvaccinated students inside classrooms and riding school buses must quarantine because of potential exposure to the coronavirus

Inside classrooms, unvaccinated students who are properly wearing masks do not have to quarantine even if they spend all day at least 3 feet away from an infected student with a properly fitted facial covering. But on a bus, unvaccinated students wearing masks must quarantine if they spend 15 minutes over 24 hours within 6 feet of an infected person.

https://www.oregonlive.com/coronavirus/2021/09/dozens-more-students-quarantined-in-latest-school-bus-covid-19-incident-parents-ask-how-this-makes-sense.html

Mike

STATISTICS ON RECENT DOUGLAS COUNTY COVID DEATHS.

68 Douglas County Covid deaths have been reported since August 20 (24 days ago), when the Douglas County Public Health Network began reporting the vaccination status of residents who died of Covid. DPHN identified resident deaths in one of three categories; fully vaccinated, vaccinated (with one shot), or not vaccinated. DPHN also reports the sex, age, date tested positive and date of death for each resident, but does not report the location where each person died. The Oregon Health Authority reports most of the same information on each Douglas County Covid death including the location where they died.

Below are the statistics for the previously reported 68 Douglas County Covid deaths, not including an infant who died on September 6.

--------------------------------------------------------Average

-------------------------Number--------%------------Age

Fully Vaccinated------12----------17.9%--------65.3

Not Vaccinated--------55---------82.1%--------73.8

==================

Location-----------------Number--------%

Mercy Hospital------------49----------73.1

Residence-------------------10----------14.9

Unreported------------------2------------2.9

Roseburg VA-----------------1------------1.5

Portland VA-----------------1-------------1.5

St. Charles Hosp------------1------------1.5

Harborview Hosp----------1------------1.5

Hillsboro Hosp--------------1------------1.5

Mekenz-Will Hosp---------1------------1.5

==============

-----------------------------------------------Fully

-------------------------------------------Vaccinated--------Unvaccinated

Avg. Days after Tested Positive-----10.9--------------------11.3

=================

Sex------------Vaccinated--------Unvaccinated

Male--------------7------------------------28

Female-----------5------------------------27

Mike

Repeat of yesterday's comment:

I suspect tomorrow's News-Review will publish an article claiming Covid cases in Douglas County dropped over the weekend, when in reality it was Covid testing that dropped over the weekend. Less people were tested which explains why less cases were reported. The number of cases is NOT an accurate measure of whether there has been an improvement.

In fact, Douglas County may be worsening because its 7-day positive test rate increased from a recent low of 23% a week ago to a near record 30% over the weekend. What this means is, though less residents were tested for Covid over the weekend, the percentage of those residents who tested positive increased, which is alarming. Both the number of cases AND the positive test rate need to decrease before we can say things are improving.

After initially ramping up testing in response to the increased number of Covid cases, hospitalizations and deaths, it appears Douglas County Covid is now ramping down testing, even though the positive test rate remains very high. Douglas County conducted 314 Covid tests per day over the weekend while averaging 393 tests per day for the past week. This is approximately half the number of daily tests conducted in Douglas County just three weeks ago.

Below is the average number of daily Covid tests conducted in Douglas County for each of the previous 5-weeks.

-----------------------Average

Week-----------------Daily

Ending----------------Tests

9/13/21--------------393

9/6/21----------------569

8/30/21--------------625

8/23/21--------------661

8/16/21--------------440

This should be an issue of concern, especially if testing is intentionally being ramped down to make it appear as if Douglas County’s Covid status is improving, when that may not be the case.

dejadoodoo

Mike, re your statement that "...it appears Douglas County Covid is now ramping down testing..." Is it not possible that the number of tests simply correlates to the number of people concerned that they are infected or have been exposed?

In the earlier phases of the pandemic many people got tests out of concern/fear that they might have been infected; very few in our area were infected back then. At this point in time, there seems less fear, and getting the test itself is rare unless symptoms are present. I'd say that if fewer people are presenting as ill, fewer tests would be a logical result.

The reason I believe that there is less fear is that one large group of people have wisely acquired immunization, and the other large group has chosen to accept the disease as inevitable but probably not fatal, at least not for them. The time to hope the unvaccinated will change their minds has passed -- our efforts from this point forward would probably be better spent on figuring out how the vaccinated can acquire goods and services from same-minded people.

mworden

I'd also add that it has been the norm for Monday figures to appear artificially low due to less testing and slower reporting on the weekend. By mid-week, the more accurate numbers appear.

Mike

While weekend numbers of reported tests, cases and deaths are typically lower than those reported later in the week, you have to go back to mid-July to find a weekend with a lower number of reported tests.

Mike

In case you missed it, the numbers above are weekly averages, NOT weekend.

Mike

It's certainly possible. I don't have enough information to know for sure. I'll explain why it "appears" that way to me.

Initially and for nearly a year, the Oregon Health Authority and Douglas County only reported the number of people tested daily who had previously NEVER been tested. This excluded the number of periodic repeated tests performed daily on healthcare workers and emergency responders. These are workers who are in contact with the public through their job and NOT suspected of being Covid positive, but are tested regularly to protect the public.

Excluding testing of healthcare workers and emergency responders from daily reports was different than how other states reported their daily testing to include those repeated testing of healthcare workers and emergency responders. This lasted for almost a year before the OHA realized Oregon had a much higher positive test rate compared to other states which included in their calculation the repeated periodic testing of healthcare workers and emergency responders when calculating their positive test rate.

Realizing Oregon was NOT counting Covid testing like the rest of the states; on November 29, 2020 OHA made the change to include repeated periodic testing of healthcare workers and emergency responders in their daily reports. The number of total tests reported by the Oregon Health Authority immediately jumped nearly one million tests that day. Afterwards, OHA’s reporting of daily tests increased from approximately 7,000 tests per day to over 20,000 tests per day. Likewise, Douglas County’s reported daily testing also increased from approximately 80 tests per day to over 300 per day. That was back pre-delta, when Douglas County was often reporting less than 10 cases per day. I therefore conclude Douglas County’s baseline repeated and scheduled testing of healthcare workers and emergency responders is approximately 250 - 300 tests per day.

220 people tested positive over the weekend and total of 940 Covid tests were performed over the weekend according to the OHA. There are three ways to make the numbers work. One, only 200 people (not healthcare or emergency responders) were tested and all 200 tested positive. Two, the number of routine periodic testing of health care workers and emergency responders was reduced. Three, a significant number of healthcare workers and emergency responders tested positive as a result of their routine periodic test. Can you think of another reason? Which reason to you find most plausible?

mworden

To me, it's most plausible that someone along the info pipeline who was responsible for collating and reporting tests and results at the various testing sites took a day or two off over the weekend. We'll know soon enough.

Mike

If so, even more reason for the News-Review to NOT report EVERY Tuesday that Covid cases are dropping.

Mike

Today's headline: Eleven deaths reported as COVID-19 cases see increase over past two days.

Yeah, right.

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