By Nicole Montesano • Staff Writer • 

State report says protocol fatigue may lead to more hospitalizations

The Oregon Health Authority says that “protocol fatigue” may lead to more people catching the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19, and consequently, becoming ill enough to require hospitalization.

The number of hospital beds in Oregon remains in very short supply; on Friday, the OHA said there were just two Intensive Care Unit beds available in the six-county region that includes Yamhill County, and just 11 adult non-ICU beds.

Nonetheless, the overall number of people being hospitalized for COVID-19 had been decreasing, until the week before last. Now, the state said, it worries that decline may be slowing.

Yamhill County announced two deaths from COVID-19 on Friday. On Monday, the county reported 46 new cases of COVID-19. There have now been 118 deaths in the county, and 8,980 cases.

The OHA has now released details on three of the four deaths announced last week: An 82-year-old man tested positive on Oct. 20 and died on Oct. 27 at his residence. A 91-year-old man tested positive on Oct. 20 and died on Oct. 27 at his residence A 74-year-old man tested positive on Oct. 14 and died on Oct. 28 at Willamette Valley Medical Center. All three had underlying conditions.

The OHA announced on Friday that it will be linking to the Oregon Health & Science University’s COVID-19 forecast model.

It said the OHSU forecasting document “employs a long-used epidemiological model to predict the number of persons who are susceptible to being infected, who are actively infected or who have recovered at any previous time.

“The current report, published Oct. 28, uses data provided by OHA and others that project how fast the virus may spread in the population and provides projections on possible outcomes, including infection rates and impacts on hospital capacity.”

It predicts “a slowing in the decline of hospitalizations due to fatigue over the public health protocols that are effective in stopping the spread of COVID-19.”

The OHA said “this is not expected to generate a surge, although that risk remains. The newest report also projects that the anticipated approval by federal agencies and the Western States Scientific Safety Workgroup of pediatric vaccine for children ages 5-11 would help decrease COVID-19 transmission.”



This has been the longest two weeks ever.

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