State Marks Grim Milestone with 4,000 Covid Deaths

More than 4,000 Oregonians have died due to complications related to Covid-19, state officials announced Monday, surpassing a somber milestone even as other pandemic indicators show continued improvement.

A full quarter of that number — 1,000 deaths — came in just the past two months, as the state suffered its worst-yet surge of Covid-related infections and hospitalizations fueled by the more contagious delta variant.

“That’s two short months since we last paused to mark the painful milestone of 3,000 Covid-19 related deaths in Oregon,” Oregon Health Authority Director Patrick Allen said in a statement. “Our condolences go out to everyone who has lost a loved one, a family member, a friend or a neighbor.”

The two milestones in such quick succession tell the story of how severely the delta variant has ravaged Oregon’s communities, Allen said, and are all the more heartbreaking considering many could have been prevented by the free and widely available Covid-19 vaccines.

“Covid-19 vaccines are widely available throughout Oregon, and they are our best protection against serious illness and death from this virus,” he said. “My message to Oregonians today is simple: The delta variant has changed everything. Please, get vaccinated as soon as you can.”

Despite the grim milestone, state officials also reported that the number of newly identified coronavirus cases declined in Oregon for a sixth straight week Monday, while hospitalizations and test positivity rates also continued to trend downward.

In the Canby ZIP code, OHA recorded slightly more than 120 new Covid-19 infections over the past two weeks — down from the more than 160 identified over the previous two-week period.

More than 10% of the community’s population has been sickened by the virus since the pandemic hit Oregon in March 2020. Canby’s infection rate of 1,007.1 cases per 10,000 residents remains the highest in Clackamas County.

The Covid outlook at Canby School District also appears to have greatly improved as students and teachers enter their second month of full-time, in-person learning. The district is reporting seven students and one staff member have tested positive, with another 24 students in quarantine.

A total of 72 students (28 of them at Canby High School) and seven staff have experienced confirmed cases since the academic year began at the end of August.

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