Jackson County Public Health reports 76 new COVID-19 cases as of 12:01 am on December 18, 2020. Additionally, three cases were removed from the total case count that had previous reporting dates. These updates bring the total reported COVID-19 cases in Jackson County to 5,191. Jackson County Public Health is reporting three new COVID-19 deaths; this brings the total deaths to 57.
Jackson County’s 55th COVID-19 death is a 76-year-old man who tested positive on November 19 and died on December 16 at Ashland Community Hospital. He had underlying conditions.
Jackson County’s 56th COVID-19 death is an 89-year-old woman who tested positive on November 12 and died on November 25 at her residence. She had underlying conditions.
Jackson County’s 57th COVID-19 death is a 76-year-old man who tested positive on November 20 and died on November 27 at his residence. He had underlying conditions.
For additional information, visit the Jackson County COVID-19 Data Dashboard at Situation in Jackson County, Oregon webpage. The Oregon Health Authority’s COVID-19 Data Dashboard website does publish Jackson County COVID-19 data.
How the COVID-19 Vaccine Will Be Distributed
COVID-19 vaccines are 95% effective and have undergone rigorous safety testing. Vaccination gives us hope that the pandemic will end. Our best protection from COVID-19 will be a combination of getting a COVID-19 vaccine, wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds, and washing your hands often. No one tool alone is going to stop the pandemic.
The vaccine is currently not available to the general population; Oregon is in the 1A phase of distribution. In the meantime, we need to continue safety measures to keep the virus from spreading: Wear a mask, physically distance from others, wash your hands, avoid gatherings, and stay home when you’re sick.
As COVID-19 vaccine becomes available, Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will ensure the distribution process is based on community involvement that will provide an equitable system challenging the roles of power, privilege, and racism — informed by a newly assembled Vaccine Advisory Committee (VAC).
Using an equity framework, OHA will distribute the COVID-19 vaccine in line with CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice (ACIP) recommended a phased approach:
- 1A. Health care workers, with first distribution to those with direct exposure to COVID-19 in their work (such as hospital paid and unpaid workers, from clinicians to maintenance), EMS, long-term care facilities (LTCF) employees, and residents.
- 1B. Essential workers such as teachers, bus drivers, food processors, and other people who keep our society open and the economy moving. The OHA Vaccine Advisory Committee, representing community perspectives, will identify and prioritize this group.
- 1C. People with underlying health conditions, and people over the age of 65. (B and C completed in late spring, depending on vaccine availability).
Jackson County is under the Extreme Risk level, and disease activity is widespread in the county. Please follow the guidance under the Extreme Risk; following the guidance will help reduce the community spread of COVID-19. Information can be found on the OHA website.
There are many ways to recognize and celebrate the holidays and still stay safe. It’s wise to consider participating in activities that are a lower risk so that you and your loved ones remain healthy throughout the season. This year will look different from other years. We know it’s disappointing not to gather and celebrate as you usually would, but it will be worth the effort to stay safe.
Travel may increase your chance of spreading and getting COVID-19. The Oregon Health Authority and the Centers for Disease Control continue to recommend postponing travel and staying home, as this is the best way to protect yourself and others this year. Review the Oregon Statewide Recommended Guidance for Travel.
It’s important to remember to follow the general safety guidelines that will keep you and your loved ones healthy during the holiday season. Everyone can make the winter holiday celebration safer this year.
- Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth, both indoor and outdoor.
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others who do not live with you
- Avoid crowded, poorly ventilated indoor spaces
- Wash your hands often
- Get your flu vaccine
- Minimize the number of people you are around and limit the gathering size to 6 people and no more than two different households.
- Host a virtual celebration with friends and family
- Gather virtually for gift exchange or activity
For more information: