By News-Register staff • 

Hospitals urge residents to follow COVID-19 protocols; Governor enacts outdoor mask mandate

Both Yamhill County hospitals have teamed with county Public Health to issue a joint press release urging people to “follow established guidelines for controlling the spread of COVID-19.”

The state saw another record-breaking number of cases on Monday, when 4,701 new cases were announced, spanning three days.

On Tuesday, Governor Kate Brown announced she is instituting an outdoor mask mandate in response to the rapid spread. It goes into effect on Friday, but the governor is urging residents to begin following it immediately.

“The Delta variant is spreading fast and wide, throwing our state into a level of crisis we have not yet seen in the pandemic. Cases and hospitalizations are at a record high,” Brown said. “Masks are a quick and simple tool we can immediately deploy to protect ourselves and our families, and quickly help stop further spread of COVID-19.”

The press release from Providence Newberg Medical Center, Willamette Valley Medical Center and Public Health, spells out when and how to quarantine if people have been exposed to COVID-19, or develop symptoms.

People who are unvaccinated or only partially vaccinated, who come into contact with COVID-19 should isolate themselves at home for a minimum of 10 days, the press release says.

If they develop symptoms, including cough, fever or chills, they should call 971-326-8718 for information on testing.

It asks people not to go to a hospital emergency room or urgent care clinic to seek testing. Hospitals and emergency rooms have been overwhelmed in recent days.

However, if people develop severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, becoming confused or especially hard to wake, persistent chest pain or bluish lips or face, they should go immediately to the emergency room or call 911.

People who are fully vaccinated and who come into contact with COVID-19 do not need to isolate, the press release says, unless they develop symptoms.

If they do, they should call 971-326-8718 for information on testing, and isolate themselves at home for at least 10 days, if the test is positive. They should not stop isolating until they have been without symptoms, and fever-free without fever-reducing medications, for 24 hours. If they develop symptoms with no known contact, they should stay home until they are well, and get tested. 

Under the new outdoor mask mandate, the OHA rule will require masks for all individuals — regardless of vaccination status — in outdoor settings in which individuals from different households are unable to consistently maintain physical distance. The rule does not apply to fleeting encounters, such as two individuals walking by one another on a trail or in a park. While the rule does not apply to outdoor gatherings at private residences, masks are strongly recommended in those settings when individuals from different households do not consistently maintain physical distance.
“It is much easier for people with the Delta variant, compared to people who were sick last year, to infect others around them,” said State Health Officer Dr. Dean Sidelinger. “This is because they have one thousand times more virus in their nose – which means that those around them are much more likely to get sick because this variant behaves so differently. We are starting to see instances where cases are clustering around events, like outdoor music festivals, that happen outdoors. Wearing masks in crowded settings – even outdoors – will help slow the spread of COVID-19.”
The rule does not apply to:
* Children younger than 5 years old;
* Individuals who are actively eating, drinking, or sleeping — as well as individuals living outdoors, such as persons experiencing houselessness;
* Persons playing or practicing competitive sports, or engaged in an activity in which it is not feasible to wear a mask — such as swimming;
* Individuals delivering a speech or performing — such as with outdoor music or theater;
* Mask requirements for day-to-day operations at K-12 schools are not governed by this rule, and will instead continue to fall under the school mask rule. Outside public events, spectator events, and gatherings of the general public on K-12 school grounds will be subject to the rule. Child care and youth programs will continue to follow existing OHA mask guidance; andentities subject to the ADA must continue to comply with that law.
“The combination of vaccines and masks is the most powerful way we can fight this latest surge of COVID-19 and save lives,” Brown said. “Vaccination continues to be the best way you can protect yourself and your family from the Delta variant, and the most effective way we can help our exhausted nurses and doctors, who are working around the clock to treat Oregonians sick with COVID in our ICUs — the majority of which are unvaccinated individuals. With the full FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine this week, we have additional reassurance that the vaccines are safe and effective.”



Two weeks, they said. Right.


The more people argue and refuse to follow the most basic guidelines for preventing the spread of infection, the longer this is going to last. The CDC is saying now that herd immunity is out of reach at this point, meaning we'll have cold, flu, and Covid season from now on. Thanks to all the unvaccinated anti-maskers for making ongoing disease and death possible for everyone else.


Thanks a lot, all you Typhoid Marys, hoax spreaders, Proud Boys (the word "boys" is appropriate in this case) and our clownish Commissioners S and B; you've proven how stupidity is contagious, too.

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