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Unvaccinated People Have Never Been More Vulnerable, Says Oregon Health Official

Screenshot of press briefing


While hospitalizations and new case counts are declining in Oregon, the COVID-19 surge is far from over. 


At a press conference Tuesday, state deputy epidemiologist Dr. Tom Jeanne said the Delta variant is still a formidable threat, especially for those who are not vaccinated.

“If you’re unvaccinated, you’ve never been more vulnerable to being sickened by the virus, passing the virus on to your loved ones, getting seriously ill or dying from Covid-19,: Jeanne said. “If you are unvaccinated, you are risking the health of your families, your loved ones, and everyone you encounter while infected.”

Jeanne said the rate of Covid-19 in unvaccinated people is four times higher than in those who are vaccinated. He added that the majority of breakthrough cases are mild or asymptomatic. 

A spike in cases in counties in northeastern Oregon and southeastern Washington state linked to the Pendleton Round-Up rodeo is causing concern among state and local health officials. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown said there is ample supply of the Pfizer vaccine in the state for people eligible for vaccine booster shots at least six months after they complete the two-shot vaccine series. Officials said it's too early to say if Oregon's new infection cases foreshadow a new spike in cases statewide.



Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.
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