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Coronavirus in Oregon: 6,904 new cases amid omicron plateau

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Officials reported 6,904 new known cases of COVID-19 in Oregon Tuesday, as an explosive growth in omicron infections earlier this month has roughly plateaued for the past 10 days. It appears, however, too early to say whether the surge has peaked.

The state reported a record 10,947 cases on Friday, and Tuesday’s number was significantly lower. But over the past 10 days, the state consistently has been averaging close to 8,000 new known cases each day, including on Tuesday.

On top of that, the test positivity rate, which is the percentage of all tests administered that come back positive for the virus, was 25%. That’s near the record. It’s also indicative of a lack of testing to detect the true number of infections and a sign that the virus is still transmitting widely in the community.

In other news Tuesday, the Oregon Health Authority announced that its director, Patrick Allen, had taken “a serious fall” and was transported to a hospital Sunday. The agency said Allen was “undergoing evaluation for subsequent heart issues” but expected to be sent home soon.

The agency said its deputy director, Kris Kautz, will temporarily oversee the agency for at least this week while Allen is out.

Where the cases where by county: Baker (16), Benton (217), Clackamas (505), Clatsop (21), Columbia (71), Coos (85), Crook (58), Curry (30), Deschutes (505), Douglas (238), Gilliam (7), Grant (1), Harney (16), Hood River (53), Jackson (520), Jefferson (173), Josephine (99), Klamath (130), Lake (29), Lane (362), Lincoln (71), Linn (286), Malheur (170), Marion (841), Morrow (52), Multnomah (750), Polk (193), Sherman (7), Tillamook (37), Umatilla (208), Union (36), Wallowa (18), Wasco (165), Washington (683), Wheeler (21) and Yamhill (230).

Deaths: The state reported 41 new deaths, but didn’t immediately share details, such as ages or the dates on which they occurred.

Hospitalizations: 1,057 people with confirmed cases of COVID-19 are hospitalized across the state, up 12 from Monday. That includes 152 patients in intensive care, a decrease of nine from the previous day.

Vaccines: 2,521 people have been reported as newly vaccinated since Monday.

Since it began: Oregon has reported 597,172 confirmed or presumed infections and 5,994 deaths, among the lowest per capita numbers in the nation. To date, the state has reported 7,127,936 vaccine doses administered, fully vaccinating 2,816,638 people and partially vaccinating 298,575.

— Aimee Green; agreen@oregonian.com; @o_aimee

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