Employee Tests Positive for Coronavirus at Canby-Area Farming Operation

The inevitable has happened: The coronavirus has come to Canby. An employee at a local farming operation tested positive for COVID-19 last week by Clackamas County Public Health, according to a person with knowledge of the situation who was not authorized to speak publicly.

The individual worked inside a pre-production facility and did not have direct contact with the public or food products, according to our source. The source says a team from Clackamas County Public Health visited the facility last week to perform contact tracing and notify other employees who may have been exposed.

A number of employees have been directed to self-isolate for 14 days, in accordance with CDC guidelines and the recommendations of local health officials, according to the source. The individual with confirmed COVID-19 is also at home and following isolation protocols.

Reached Sunday morning, a spokesman for Clackamas County declined to confirm a connection with any of the county’s positive cases to the local food production facility. He also declined to confirm that a public health team had been deployed there for contact tracing. He did not say why.

“I can confirm that there is no risk to the public,” Tim Heider, the county’s coronavirus public information officer, said.

Local officials also could not confirm the case. Both Mayor Brian Hodson and Fire District Chief Jim Davis said they had not been informed of any confirmed cases in Canby.

Chief Davis said he thought it would be difficult to verify an infected person’s place of employment or city of residence due to HIPAA protections, unless the individual or company volunteered the information.

The company did not respond to requests for comment this weekend. The Canby Now Podcast is not naming the company at this time.

According to the latest numbers from the Oregon Health Authority, 12 of the state’s 161 positive cases have been linked to Clackamas County. More than 260 county residents have tested negative for the virus.

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