Since mid-September there has been an increase in COVID-19 cases in Wasco County. During the week of Sunday Sept. 20 to Saturday Sept. 26, 58 cases were reported, which is the highest number during a single week since the beginning of the pandemic.
The majority of cases in Wasco County in the past 2 weeks are related to an outbreak at Flagstone Senior Living. The first case was identified Sept. 13. There have been 48 cases total linked to the outbreak, including residents, staff, and household members of staff. Sadly, four residents who were identified as having COVID-19 have passed away during the outbreak.
The administration and staff at Flagstone have worked tirelessly to care for the residents, working long hours and double shifts to cover for fellow workers who are in isolation due to the virus. Workers from Hearts of Hospice who attend to residents of Flagstone have provided additional support, extending their care to other residents. Flagstone has also added multiple infection control practices to reduce further spread of the virus. All staff and residents (who have not yet tested positive for COVID-19) will be tested weekly for COVID-19 until 2 weeks have passed with no further cases.
Of the 62 confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases reported in Wasco County since Sept. 20, seven of those cases were determined to be “sporadic” (not associated with another case or outbreak), one was a close contact of a case, and the remaining cases related to outbreaks. As a reminder, outbreaks are reportedly publicly by the Oregon Health Authority and North Central Public Health District if the agency has 30 or more employees and the outbreak involves 5 or more persons.
As a community, it is important that we redouble our efforts and continue the fight against COVID-19. Actions like staying home when even mildly ill, physical distancing, wearing a mask and washing hands play an essential role in keeping ourselves and one another safe.
For more information on COVID data and guidelines, visit the Oregon Health Authority’s COVID-19 updates page, at https://govstatus.egov.com/OR-OHA-COVID-19, or visit the Wasco, Gilliam, Sherman COVID-19 updates website, at https://wascoshermangilliamcovid-19.com/.