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"Scary Situation": 39 COVID Outbreaks In Lane Co. Long Term Care Facilities


Public Health officials say the number of COVID-19 outbreaks in Lane County’s long term care facilities is a problem quickly becoming a crisis.

There are currently 39 active outbreaks in nursing homes and memory care facilities-- with about 350 cases associated.

Public Health spokesperson Jason Davis said this is a scary situation. “We are hearing from residents in facilities about their fears, about their concerns,” he said. "We are also hearing from loved ones about the same thing.”  

Davis said a new outbreak in South Hills Rehabilitation Center has resulted in one death and at least 32 cases. “Our epidemiologists have identified an index case or sentinel case in that particular facility and it appears to be an unvaccinated staff member.”

Davis insisted it’s important to understand how quickly one sick person can transmit the disease, causing serious illness and loss of life. He added these outbreaks underscore the value of vaccination.

Credit Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Health care workers must be fully vaccinated by October 18. Meantime, unvaccinated caregivers are still able to spread COVID in long term care and memory facilities.

Under Oregon law, all healthcare workers are required to be two weeks out from their final COVID-19 vaccine by October 18. Health officials are concerned that viral spread will continue to result in outbreaks until vaccination is widespread amongst caregivers.

Lane County Public Health considers an outbreak to be at least three cases and/or a death with COVID-19 occurring within a specific site.

These long-term care facilities have reported higher case rates as well as one or more death. Davis assured each are working hard with Public Health to mitigate spread. 

South Hills Rehabilitation Center in Eugene-32 cases and 1 death—22 cases in the last week.

Gateway Living in Springfield- 81 cases and six deaths

Avamere River Park in Eugene- 12 cases 1 death

Bayberry Commons Assisted Living and Memory Care in Springfield- 13 cases 1 death

River Grove Memory Care in Eugene- 17 cases 3 deaths

Tiffany joined the KLCC News team in 2007. She studied journalism at the University of Missouri-Columbia and has worked in a variety of media including television and daily print news. For KLCC, Tiffany reports on health care, social justice and local/regional news. She has won awards from Oregon Associated Press, PRNDI, and Education Writers Association.
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