COVID risk levels updated for Oregon counties

SALEM, Ore. – Oregon Governor Kate Brown announced the latest update to county risk levels.

Late last year, the state created a COVID risk level framework, with individual counties assigned one of four risk levels—Extreme Risk, High Risk, Moderate Risk, and Lower Risk—based on the spread of COVID-19.

In the latest update, the governor’s office said, starting Friday, there will be changes to several counties in Southern Oregon and beyond.

Josephine County now qualifies for Extreme Risk, but it will be given a two-week caution period at High Risk because it moved down from Extreme Risk in the previous period.

Klamath County qualifies for Moderate Risk, but it will be given a two-week grace period at Moderate Risk.

Jackson County will remain at High Risk without any caveats.

Douglas County, which is at Extreme Risk, will move to High Risk.

The only two counties in Extreme Risk will be Coos and Curry.

A list of the full county risk categories, effective March 26 through April 8, is available HERE.

There are three major indicators that the state considers when making these decisions.

“We look at all these areas because they really give us a whole picture of the transmission in the county,” said Jonathan Modie from the Oregon Health Authority.

The indicators are the rate of COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people over a period of 14 days, the number of COVID-19 cases over 14 days, and the test positivity percentage over the past 14 days.

“We use per 100,000 in a way to basically level the playing field for counties,” said Modie.

Counties are reassessed by the state every two weeks.

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