By Nicole Montesano • Staff Writer • 

County reports five deaths this week; six new cases this week at Linfield

Marcus Larson/News-Register##Sue Buel Elementary third grade teacher Laura Hyman gets her first COVID-19 vaccine shot from TVF&R paramedic Brian Pine with assistance from Ryan Niemeyer, during McMinnville School District s vaccine clinic.
Marcus Larson/News-Register##Sue Buel Elementary third grade teacher Laura Hyman gets her first COVID-19 vaccine shot from TVF&R paramedic Brian Pine with assistance from Ryan Niemeyer, during McMinnville School District's vaccine clinic.

Yamhill County reported five new deaths from COVID-19 this week, bringing the county to a total of 53 residents lost to the disease.

As of Thursday, the county had reported 3,367 cases.

Also this week, the Oregon Health Authority announced it would no longer report details of individual deaths, saying the effort was taking too great a toll on staff.

The News-Register has made a request to the county to continue reporting deaths within the county. Currently, the county reports only the age range; details about specific ages, dates of testing and death, place of death, gender and presence of underlying conditions have all come from the state.

Linfield University informed its staff and students that as of Wednesday, six students from the McMinnville campus have tested positive for COVID-19 this week, bringing to 16 the number of students who have tested positive upon returning to school this month for the winter term.

“All students who have tested positive and are in the infectious stage of the virus are currently in isolation, per university safety protocols,” the university said in its message. “The majority of these students tested positive as part of the check-in process and either returned home to isolate or were immediately moved to isolation rooms on campus. After isolating for 10 days, these students returned to campus activities.”

However, it said, despite the higher numbers, the university still has room for quarantining students as needed.

“Linfield is at 34% of its capacity in terms of isolation/quarantine spaces on the McMinnville campus,” it said in its message to staff.

George Fox University reported three new student cases this week, bringing the total number of on-campus student cases this month to six.

As of Thursday, the county had administered 5,803 doses of vaccine, according to the Oregon Health Authority.

County Health and Human Services Director Lindsey Manfrin told county commissioners Thursday that about 3,200 will have been given through the county’s Public Health Department by the end of today.

The county has about 1,000 people in the first phase left to vaccinate, Manfrin said, and is now scheduling clinics specifically for educators. About 2,600 people in this category are eligible, she said.

Beginning Feb. 8, people 80 and older will be eligible for vaccination, Manfrin said, but added, “Eligibility is not the same as access … that doesn’t necessarily mean we will have the doses available for them, which is frustrating for all of us.”

She said the county hopes to eventually have enough vaccines to distribute some to primary care doctors to administer to patients, but that has yet to happen.

The county is working with doctors to gauge the number of people in each age category, in order to put in its requests to the Oregon Health Authority, and plan for distribution, she said.

Comments

DG

And today we learn that there are now 9 confirmed cases from one Linfield dorm. Linfield failed to share that information when they reported the other 6 cases from this week. Prior to that, 10 students started off the semester mid-January with positive tests. They are still not testing faculty/staff. And our governor has still not included college/university staff with the group of educators who can now be vaccinated. Linfield faculty have taught in-person throughout much of the pandemic.

spicy_t

@DG I agree. I also find it odd that the university’s recent uptick in positives comes, ironically at time that their sororities have been holding their recruiting festivities.