MEDFORD, OREGON — April 6, 2020, With over 2,200 tests completed as of today, Jackson County has the highest rate of testing per capita for COVID-19 than any other county in the state of Oregon. The only counties with more total tests are Multnomah and Washington counties, which have much larger populations than Jackson County. On Sunday, April 5, 2020, OregonLive.com reported that Jackson County has also tested more people per capita than every other US state except New York, Washington and Louisiana.
"Asante, Providence Medford Medical Center, La Clinica, Mercy Flights and others in the medical community have done an amazing job getting people tested," shares Mark Orndoff, Jackson County Health and Human Services Director. "They are outstanding partners in keeping the people of Jackson County as safe as possible during this COVID-19 pandemic."
Orndoff also notes that the all-hands-on-deck approach from Jackson County—including the Communicable Disease staff, the Public Health division, Health and Human Services and other county departments—has been essential to the mitigation of the COVID-19 outbreak. Of the Communicable Disease program, Orndoff says, “The tests come in via an Electronic Lab Reporting (ELR) system at all hours of the day and night. Many of these staff members have worked for more than two months straight processing these tests and taking appropriate actions.”
The collective work of the county departments and private testing partners at Asante, Providence, La Clinica and Mercy Flights to test Jackson County residents early and promote the social distancing measures put in place have been critical to slowing the spread of COVID-19. Orndoff adds, “Having local medical providers identifying those who are most at risk or who have been exposed and subsequently recommending their patients limit their movement and exposure throughout our community has, frankly, saved lives.”
Jackson County emphasizes that it is best that everyone stay at home, practice social distancing, wear an alternative mask when they are out accessing essential services, minimize the number of times they need to access essential services, refrain from hosting or attending social gatherings, and wash their hands frequently. These actions should be taken by all people during all times of the week, including the weekends.
Here are what individuals should and shouldn’t do under Governor Kate Brown’s executive orders that are in place to flatten the curve:
- Stay home as much as possible; this includes kids and teens
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others any time you are out
- Go out only for essentials (groceries and medical care), drop off food to neighbors who can’t go out
- Exercise outside and remain 6 feet apart from other people
- Have video and phone chats
- Gather in groups
- Get together with friends and family outside your immediate household (no drinks or dinners)
- Have playdates for kids
- Make unnecessary trips
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