By Nicole Montesano • Staff Writer • 

COVID-19 cases rise; two states join Western pact

COVID-19 has claimed another life in Oregon, the Oregon Health Authority reported today, raising the state’s death toll to 92. It also reported another 43 new cases, bringing the state total to 2,354.

One new case was reported in Yamhill County, raising its total to 37.

OHA said test numbers have risen, but it’s still trying to determine reasons for the jump in COVID-19 cases. “Epidemiologists are working to determine whether there is a true increase in cases, a technical anomaly in reporting dates to be adjusted based on further reporting, or any geographic or other pattern.”

The state reported it has now tested 51,198 people.

Gov. Kate Brown on Monday announced Colorado and Nevada have joined the Western States Pact formed by Oregon, Washington and California to work together on plans for reopening their states.

“As Western states, we are all in this together,” Brown said in a news release. “Each of our states took quick and decisive action, based on science and data, to stop the spread of COVID-19.

“In the same way that we share expertise and help one another during wildfire season, we will work together as we recover from the impacts of this pandemic — with a shared vision, a common purpose, and individual paths forward tailored to the needs of our states — to reopen our communities and economies, and prepare our constituents for a safe return to public life,” she wrote.





The pact lists the following shared principles:

n Our residents’ health comes first. As home to nearly one in five Americans and gateway to the rest of the world, the West Coast has an outsized stake in controlling and ultimately defeating COVID-19.

n Health outcomes and science – not politics – will guide these decisions.

n Modifications to our states’ stay at home orders must be made based off our understanding of the total health impacts of COVID-19, including: the direct impact of the disease on our communities; the health impact of measures introduced to control the spread in communities—particularly felt by those already experiencing social disadvantage prior to COVID-19; and our health care systems’ ability to ensure care for those who may become sick with COVID-19 and other conditions.

n This effort will be guided by data. We need to see a decline in the rate of spread of the virus before large-scale reopening, and we will be working in coordination to identify the best metrics to guide this.

n Our states will only be effective by working together. Each state will work with its local leaders and communities within its borders to understand what’s happening on the ground and adhere to our agreed upon approach.



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