Gary Bell, vaccine.png

In this Jan. 15, 2021, video screenshot, a staff member at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic in La Grande applies a bandage to the arm of La Grande Police Chief Gary Bell after he received his vaccine.

UNION COUNTY — COVID-19 cases in Union County eased down since Feb. 5, according to data from the Oregon Health Authority. But since then the disease claimed its 19th victim in the county.

Union County’s total number of cases of COVID-19 — the disease causes by the novel coronavirus — stood at 1,249 as of Monday, Feb. 15, according to Oregon Health Authority. The OHA also reported the county’s most recent fatality was a 77-year-old woman who tested positive on Jan. 22 and died on Feb. 7 at Grande Ronde Hospital, La Grande.

The county had five new cases of COVID-19 on Monday. The county, however, has not had a day of double-digit cases since Friday, Feb. 5, when there were 12. From Feb. 6-15, according to the OHA data, the county has had a total of 37 new cases, or about four a day, including three on Feb. 12, five on Feb. 13 and one Sunday, Feb. 14.

The decline follows the statewide trend of decreasing numbers. The Oregon Health Authority on Sunday reported 184 new cases statewide, bringing Oregon’s total number of reported cases to 150,464.

The OHA on Sunday and Monday also reported zero new COVID-19 related deaths in Oregon. The state’s death toll remains at 2,137.

Wallowa County last week saw its highest one-day spike in new COVID-19 cases with nine on Tuesday, Feb. 9, which increased the county’s total to 127. The county since then has added six more, bringing its total to 133. There have been 56 new cases of COVID-19 in the county — including a fourth fatality — since the start of 2021, and 31 of those cases occurred since Feb. 1.

OHA also reported adding 6,693 new COVID-19 vaccinations to the state immunization registry. Of this total, 3,650 doses were administered Feb.14 and 3,043 were administered on previous days but were entered into the vaccine registry on Feb. 14.

Cumulative daily totals can take several days to finalize because providers have 72 hours to report doses administered, and technical challenges have caused providers to lag in their reporting.

OHA has been providing technical support to vaccination sites to improve the timeliness of their data entry into the state’s ALERT Immunization Information System.

Oregon as of Monday administered a cumulative total of 683,887 first and second doses of COVID-19 vaccines, according to the OHA. To date, 885,250 doses of vaccine have been delivered to sites across Oregon. The Health Authority cautioned these data are preliminary and subject to change.

The OHA also noted on Monday the decline in vaccine administrations is likely the result of the winter weather that is pummeling the region.

The Center for Human Development continues to hold COVID-19 vaccinations clinics. According to information on the center’s vaccination webpage, www.chdinc.org/get-vaccinated-update, the clinics on Feb. 19 and Feb. 22 to provide the first dose of the vaccine are full.

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