Schools relax some mask requirements
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Students, teachers and staff in Eugene and Bethel school districts will be able to remove their masks in certain outdoor and indoor situations during the final weeks of the school year.
As more people are fully immunized in Oregon, more and more aspects of life are returning to “normal.” In this context, the Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Department of Education recently released new masks guidelines for schools. Masks are no longer needed for Oregonians outdoors as of May 18, although masking is still encouraged, especially in crowded places and for unvaccinated people.
Eugene’s two school districts announced changes this week to align with new state guidelines. While they differ in some areas, the two still require masks indoors and whenever students and staff interact, regardless of immunization status.
Springfield Public Schools will not be making any changes for students at this time, district spokeswoman Jen McCulley said, but starting the week of June 1, staff who perform the immunization check will have the possibility to remain without mask inside when students are not present.
People are considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 two weeks after receiving their second dose of the vaccine if they have received the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or two weeks after receiving the single dose of Johnson and the Janssen vaccine of Johnson.
Oregon to require all captive mink to receive COVID-19 vaccines
Oregon will require all captive mink to receive COVID-19 vaccines.
The move follows an outbreak of COVID-19 among animals and workers at a large mink farm in Oregon last November. As a result of this outbreak, several mink off the farm have also tested positive.
The Oregon Department of Agriculture’s interim emergency rule requires all captive mink to be vaccinated by August 31. Any captive mink born or imported after this date must be vaccinated within 120 days of birth or 60 days after importation.
Anyone holding mink in captivity should also participate in surveillance testing for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 in humans.
“The ODA takes the necessary precautions to reduce the risk of infection in captive mink, as well as to reduce the risk of potential mutation of the virus and the potential for transmission of the virus to humans,” said Dr Ryan Scholz , state veterinarian. A press release.
Eight of Oregon’s 11 mink farms are in Marion County.
The rule was filed Wednesday and is in effect until November 22.
Oregon has five new COVID deaths, 433 new cases
The Oregon Health Authority reported five new COVID-19-related deaths on Friday, bringing the state’s death toll to 2,665.
The OHA also reported 433 new confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19, bringing the state total to 200,632.
Vaccinations in Oregon
The OHA reported that 30,898 new doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been added to the state’s immunization registry. Of this total, 16,334 doses were administered on May 27 and 14,564 were administered the previous days, but were entered in the vaccine registry on May 27.
The seven-day moving average is now 28,503 doses per day.
Oregon administered a total of 2,171,355 first and second doses of Pfizer, 1,584,788 first and second doses of Moderna, and 140,073 single doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines. As of Friday, 1,811,098 people had completed a series of COVID-19 vaccines. There are 2,218,243 people who have received at least one dose.
To date, 2,706,796 doses of Pfizer, 2,103,540 doses of Moderna and 291,100 doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine have been delivered to sites across Oregon.
The number of hospital patients with COVID-19 in Oregon is 260, four more than Thursday. There are 59 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, nine fewer than Thursday.
The total number of bed days for COVID-19 positive patients in the past seven days is 1,835, a decrease of 17.9% from the previous seven days. The maximum daily number of beds occupied by COVID-19 positive patients in the past seven days is 274.
Cases and deaths
The new confirmed and suspected COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Baker (2), Benton (1), Clackamas (53), Clatsop (3), Columbia (8), Coos (2) , Crook (2)), Curry (1), Deschutes (40), Douglas (26), Gilliam (1), Harney (6), Hood River (1), Jackson (14), Jefferson (9), Josephine ( 6), Klamath (14), Lane (21), Linn (21), Malheur (6), Marion (45), Morrow (1), Multnomah (66), Polk (13), Tillamook (1), Umatilla ( 16), Union (3), Wasco (4), Washington (40) and Yamhill (7).
- Oregon’s 2,661st death is a 68-year-old woman from Josephine County who tested positive on May 4 and died May 26 at Asante Three Rivers Medical Center. She had underlying conditions.
- The 2662nd COVID-19 death in Oregon is a 78-year-old woman from Marion County who tested positive on May 7 and died on May 26 in Salem Hospital. She had underlying conditions.
- The 2,663rd death from COVID-19 in Oregon is an 86-year-old Washington County woman who tested positive on May 11 and died on May 17 at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center. She had underlying conditions.
- The 2,664th death from COVID-19 in Oregon is a 50-year-old man from Multnomah County who tested positive on May 11 and died on May 24 at Providence Portland Medical Center. He had underlying conditions.
- The 2,665th death from COVID-19 in Oregon is a 62-year-old woman from Multnomah County who tested positive on May 9 and died on May 27 at Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center. The presence of underlying conditions is being confirmed.
Costco says free samples and food courts will come back in full by June
Attention Costco Buyers: These free samples are about to make a full return.
The retailer revealed during its third-quarter earnings call that it will bring back a full sample along with its food court and seats, another sign that the United States is slowly moving towards normal in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Richard Galanti, chief financial officer and executive vice president of Costco, said the retailer will introduce full sampling in stages.
About 170 of Costco’s roughly 550 locations will bring back full sampling by the first week of June, with the rest of the locations returning to full sampling by the end of June.
Idaho governor rescinds lieutenant governor’s mask warrant ban
BOISE – Idaho Gov. Brad Little issued an executive order on Friday repealing a mask warrant ban put in place while he was out of state by the lieutenant governor, describing his actions as an abuse of tyrannical power and a political coup.
So far, the Republican governor had been reserved in his comments on Republican Lieutenant Governor Janice McGeachin, a member of the far right who has worked to undermine Little’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
Last week, she announced her gubernatorial candidacy, challenging the first term holder Little. Her Thursday decree banning mask warrants in schools and public buildings is widely seen as part of that campaign, and she is already using that decree in fundraising efforts.
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