January 10th COVID-19 Update

Michael Dembrow

January 10, 2021

I hope that you and your loved ones are doing well, staying healthy, and looking out for your neighbors and friends in these difficult times.

Today’s COVID numbers appear to be moving back down, now that the counties appear to have caught up from the earlier problems with reporting.  COVID deaths have fortunately gone down to two, but that could be a function of weekend reporting.  The number of those in hospital with COVID is also down again today.  Once again, this is in contrast with what we’re seeing for the nation as a whole.

In tonight’s newsletter you’ll also find a summary/analysis of last week’s “Outbreak Report,” which shows us what’s occurring in long-term care, workplaces, child care centers, and schools.  Once again we see that 57% of all COVID deaths are occurring in long-term care facilities—pointing to the importance of getting vaccines to those in congregate care.  The same is true of adults in custody—nearly all of the increases in settings categorized as workplace outbreaks are occurring in our correctional facilities.

You’ll also see in tonight’s newsletter that we’re starting to make real improvements in deployment of vaccinations in the state.  Thirty-seven percent of our available vaccines have been used so far, which has moved us above the nation’s average. 

Finally, tomorrow marks the beginning of the 81st Legislative Assembly, and you’ll find information about that below. 

I’ve been hearing from many constituents who are worried about what we’ll experience at the Capitol tomorrow, given what transpired at our nation’s Capitol this past week, and I really appreciate their concern.

By the time you read this, tomorrow morning’s session may be over, and you’ll know how it turned out.  I obviously have no idea at this point how it’s going to go.  There may be individuals who try to break into the Capitol, despite its being temporarily closed to the public as a result of the pandemic.  But I have absolute confidence in our state troopers’ commitment to keeping us safe.  Just look at the video of how our troopers behaved when a mob tried to break into the Capitol during our special session on December 21, after one of our House members opened to locked door and let them in. (Here’s the video of that.)

They put their bodies on the line in order to keep us safe, and I know I can speak for other legislators in saying that we deeply appreciate that.  Some of the mob did make their way inside after using pepper spray on the troopers, but fortunately they were eventually detained and several were arrested.  We were kept safe and able to do the people’s business. 

Our state troopers were prepared, competent, and committed in a way that unfortunately the U.S. Capitol Police were not.  I can’t tell you how much it means to us to know that these brave men and women are ready to do whatever it will take to keep us safe.  They will be physically monitoring every entry and exit point at the Capitol, and I’m confident that no lawbreakers will be allowed in.  

Having said all that, it’s so sad that things have come to this point.  In order to protect legislators and the Capitol, our state troopers and local police are being diverted from other important work that they should be doing.  I hope we can put this behind us sometime soon.

Please stay safe, and let me know if you have any questions about information in today’s newsletter.


  • New COVID Cases: OHA reports 1,225 new COVID cases today. This count is a combination of positive test results and those who are presumed positive (see definition below).  The cumulative number of cases in Oregon since the beginning of the pandemic is 124,476.
  • Positive Test Results: OHA reports 1,137 positive test results today. (Individuals may have had multiple tests come back positive, and each is now counted separately.) The cumulative total of positive test results since the beginning of the pandemic is now 169,623.
  • Total Tests: OHA reported an additional 14,238 tests today. Our cumulative total of reported tests is now 2,826,905.
  • Positivity Rate: Today’s test positivity ratio for Oregon is 8.0%. The national ratio today is 11.7%.
  • Deaths: I’m sorry to report 2 additional COVID deaths today. You can read about the Oregonians that we’ve lost further down in the newsletter. The total number of COVID deaths in Oregon is now 1,605.
  • Hospitalized: OHA does not fully report on new hospitalizations over the weekend. They did report that there are 403 Oregonians hospitalized with confirmed COVID cases today, which is 18 fewer than reported yesterday.  There are 84 COVID-19 patients in intensive care unit (ICU) beds, which is 3 more than yesterday.
  • Vaccinations: As of the end of yesterday, here are the latest numbers:
    • New Immunizations Reported: 8,648
      • 6,505 administered yesterday
      • 2,143 administered previously and report received yesterday
    • Total First and Second Doses Administered So Far: 97,010
      • This is 37% of the vaccines received so far.
    • Total Oregonians vaccinated so far: 92,801
      • This is 2.2% of all Oregonians
      • 4,081 now fully vaccinated with two doses
    • For more details, including the demographics of those receiving the vaccine, go to the OHA Vaccinations Dashboard.  And here is a link to more information about the vaccine and vaccination protocols.
  • Presumptive Cases: OHA is including “presumptive COVID-19 cases” in its reports, consistent with recently amended guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A presumptive case is someone who does not yet have a positive PCR test but is showing symptoms and has had close contact with a confirmed case. If they later test positive by PCR, those will be recategorized as confirmed cases.   
  • Other Hospital Information: OHA does not provide detailed hospitalization information over the weekend, so the following numbers are the same as Friday’s. I’ll update them on Monday.
    • Patients Currently with COVID-19 Symptoms (who may or may not have received a positive test result yet): 498 (8 fewer than yesterday). Of those, 451 (11 fewer than yesterday) have already received a positive test back.
    • Available ICU Beds: 141 (18 fewer than yesterday)
    • Other Available Beds: 598 (38 more than yesterday).
    • ICU Patients Confirmed w COVID-19: 88 (3 fewer than yesterday).
    • Confirmed COVID-19 Patients Currently on Ventilators: 54 (4 more than yesterday).
    • Available Ventilators: 774 (2 more than yesterday).
  • Dashboards:
  • Today’s National Numbers:
    • Total Tests: 268,115,423 (up 1,935,115 from yesterday).
    • Total Cases: 22,124,929 (up 225,804 from yesterday.)
    • Deaths: 365,597 (up 2,043 from yesterday).
    • These national numbers come from the COVID Tracking Project. You can visit that site here.
  • Additional Brief Updates:
    • Several Oregon newspapers have been writing articles about the current challenges with vaccinations in the state. They precede the jump in vaccinations that we’ve experienced over the last couple of days, but they do a good job of describing the challenges that we still face, despite the improvements that we’ve been experiencing with the wider prioritization net that is now being cast. 

Monday Evening: Zoom Town Hall

On Monday Representatives Barbara Smith Warner, Khanh Pham, and I will hold our first town hall of the new session.  We’ll talk about our committee assignments and our priorities for the session, introduce our staff, and share information about this unique upcoming session.  And of course, we’ll answer your questions.

Register for the town hall here.

This will be my first town hall in nearly a decade that won’t include my dear friend and colleague, Alissa Keny-Guyer, with whom I’ve had the honor of working on behalf of the people of SD 23 and partnered on many important priorities.  She has been a remarkable legislator, deeply loved and respected by colleagues and constituents alike.

The one silver lining to her leaving is that she’ll be replaced by Khanh Pham, who I predict will be equally a force in the Legislature.  Barbara and I both look forward to welcoming Khanh as a colleague and partner on her first official day as a legislator!

UPDATE:  Alissa will be with us at the Town Hall to say goodbye, accept our accolades, and begin her role as a key constituent!!!!


In advance of tomorrow’s swearing-in and first reading of Senate and House bills, the Oregon Legislative Information System (olis.oregonlegislature.gov) now contains all the bills that were “pre-session filed,” either by committee or by individual legislators.

There are around 800 at this point, but that number will quickly increase as the session begins and legislators add sponsors to their legislative concepts. 

Once you get to OLIS, you can see all the bills by number and search the bills by number, keywords, or sponsor.  Once you’ve identified a bill you’re interested in, you can easily sign up to be notified of any action on that bill (i.e., when a committee hearing or vote is scheduled). 

But a word of warning—many if not most of these bills will never actually get a hearing or make it to the floor of either chamber.  Many are duplicates of bills in the other chamber and won’t be needed.  Others will never make it out of committee because they lack the necessary support.  Also, you should know that some of the most important bills of the session have not yet received their final drafting and won’t appear on OLIS for quite some time.

Please let Logan, Ayleen, or me know if you have any questions or need help in navigating the system.


OHA’s weekly COVID report no longer includes information on outbreaks.  That information is now included in a separate Outbreak Report.  The latest report came out on Wednesday.

The Outbreak Report reports on outbreaks at long-term care facilities, workplaces, childcare centers, and schools as of January 3.

Outbreaks at Long-Term Care Facilities

The report lists outbreaks at long-term care facilities with more than five residents that have three or more confirmed cases or at least one COVID death. 

We are continuing to see increased numbers of infections in our facilities, but as is the case in the general population, we are fortunately not seeing an increase in the rate of new cases. In fact, the rate of increase is going down.

OHA reports that since the beginning of the pandemic, there have been a total of 10,521 cases and 855 deaths associated with congregate care settings. (Deaths among those living in long-term care facilities again constitute 57% of all deaths due to COVID.)

This is an increase of 673 new cases and 45 new deaths from the previous week.  The rate of increase in the prior report had been 599 new cases and 65 new deaths. This slight increase in new cases and reduction in new deaths is in line with what we saw last week for the population as a whole.

With more and more COVID vaccinations in our skilled nursing facilities, and the start this week of vaccinations for the rest of the long-term care population—we should see a return to declines in new cases.  

To date, there has still been only one death of a staff member reported.

Once again the report is divided between “Active” outbreaks and “Resolved” outbreaks.  This week’s report lists outbreaks in 216 (down from 230) long-term care facilities that are still considered active.  They are responsible for 4,567 cases and 323 deaths.  You can see them listed by facility in chronological order.

Once a facility has gone 28 days without a new case, it is moved to the “Resolved” list. If a new outbreak occurs, it is then moved back to the Active list.  There are  278 facilities whose outbreaks are now considered Resolved (up from 221).  They too are listed in chronological order.

In addition to the listed facilities, there are now 162 (up from 155) congregate settings with five or fewer beds that have also had three or more confirmed cases or one or more deaths.  These are not listed by facility name in order to protect patient privacy.

Workplace Outbreaks

OHA has been reporting each week on outbreaks at workplace settings since last spring.  Case counts include all persons linked to the outbreak, which may include household members and other close contacts of workers. (As a result, it’s possible for individuals to be counted more than once when family members are working at different workplaces.)

As we saw in congregate care facilities (and in the general population), the rate of increase in the number of new cases has gone up in the last week.  This week we saw 1,374 new COVID cases attributed to workplaces (vs. 603 the previous week).  We saw 1 new COVID death related to a workplace outbreak (vs. 0 the previous week). 

Cumulatively, since the beginning of the pandemic workplace outbreaks have been responsible for 14,549 cases and 70 deaths.  This is again a little more than 12% of all cases in Oregon as of January 3.

I regret to say that again the largest single workplace sector for COVID remains our correctional institutions, a proportion that is on the rise.  Prison cases (which includes staff and adults in custody) now make up the five largest active workplace outbreaks in Oregon. In all, outbreaks at state, federal, and county corrections facilities are responsible for 3,351 (up from 1,863) of the 5,096 current active outbreaks (66% of the current active workplace outbreaks, up from 44% last week).  By the way, AIC’s are not counted in case counts for the counties in which their institutions are located, but staff are.

The report lists all of those workplaces with more than 30 employees that have five or more cases. They are listed in descending order of number of cases. They are divided into two lists: “Active” and “Resolved” cases. 

You’ll find 128 (down from 136) workplaces listed as “Active” this week, totaling 5,096 cases (up from 4,421 last week).  Here are the top 10 workplaces by number of cases:

  1. Snake River Correctional Institution, Ontario (574, +10)
  2. Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution, Pendleton (530, +4)
  3. Deer Ridge Correctional Institution, Madras (265, +73)
  4. Oregon State Correctional Institution, Salem (235, +11)
  5. Two Rivers Correctional Institution, Umatilla (215, +172)
  6. Amazon Distribution Center, Troutdale (180, +13)
  7. Salem Hospital, Salem (158, +22)
  8. Oregon State Penitentiary (134, +81)
  9. Oregon State Hospital, Salem (116, +18)
  10. Amazon Aumsville, Salem (112, +13)

A facility goes onto the resolved list once it has not had a new case in 28 days. There are now 68 (up from 58) facilities on the Resolved list.  As opposed to the way that congregate living lists are now being managed, once a workplace outbreak has been in resolved status for 56 days, it is dropped from the resolved list.

Deaths are not listed by workplace.

Childcare Outbreaks

When public health epidemiologists see a cluster of cases in a childcare center occurring at the same time, they flag the center as having an outbreak.  OHA epidemiologists will investigate and will consider cases to be related—i.e., part of a child care outbreak—unless a more likely alternative source for acquisition is identified.

They list all childcare centers that include two or more cases, in facilities with more than 16 children.  These case counts may include children, staff, and household members.

There are now 16 facilities listed as Active (down from 18). They comprise a total of 96 cases (up from 68 last week). 

After 28 days without an outbreak, centers are moved to the “Resolved” list.  They are removed from the Resolved list after 56 days.  Twenty-four centers are now on the Resolved list (up from 18),

In addition to the listed centers, there are 13 (down from 17) childcare facilities that serve 16 or fewer children that have had an outbreak of 2 or more cases in the last 28 days. For privacy reasons, these smaller centers are not listed by name (the reasoning being that it’s too easy to identify affected individuals in the smaller centers).

Cases in K-12 Schools

OHA is reporting all COVID-19 cases in schools that offer in-person instruction, distinguishing between students and staff.  The report lists all schools that have at least thirty students and have at least one reported COVID case.  This reporting protocol applies to all public and private schools and programs.

This week’s report shows a decline in active outbreaks and in the number of cases among students and staff, which is not surprising, given that schools were on vacation during this reporting period.

This week’s report on schools with in-person instruction shows outbreaks at 45 (down from 62) public and private schools (including elementary, middle, and high schools) around the state.  These outbreaks comprise 30 (down from 44 last week) cases among students and 91 (down from 99 last week) cases among staff members or volunteers.

There are now 148 schools in the “Resolved” category (up from 132), meaning that it’s been more than 28 days since a new case was reported.  They comprise 125 students and 163 staff members.

Though increasing, the overall numbers remain relatively low and somewhat scattered.  However, it’s important to remember that most instruction is still happening remotely in Oregon. Approximately 38% of Oregon’s schools are providing some amount of in-person learning right now, affecting just a little over 6% of Oregon’s students. Those potentially subject to an in-school outbreak are thus a relatively small percentage of all students and teachers.

Where Are Today’s New Cases?

If we put together the positive test results and new “presumptive” cases reported today, the overall number of new cases reported is 1,225.  Here is the breakdown of cases by county today:

Baker (5)

Benton (15)

Clackamas (86)

Clatsop (6)

Columbia (17)

Coos (11)

Curry (1)

Deschutes (51)

Douglas (13)

Hood River (10)

Jackson (39)

Jefferson (11)

Josephine (18)

Klamath (43)

Lane (89)

Lincoln (4)

Linn (27)

Malheur (1)

Marion (233)

Morrow (4)

Multnomah (229)

Polk (45)

Tillamook (1)

Umatilla (34)

Union (6)

Wallowa (4)

Wasco (10)

Washington (180)

Yamhill (32)

And the Deaths:

Oregon’s 1604th COVID-19 death is a 96-year-old woman in Lane County who tested positive on December 29 and died on January 7 PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center—Riverbend.

Oregon’s 1605th COVID-19 death is a 69-year-old man in Multnomah County who tested positive on November 17 and died on January 9; location of death is being confirmed.

Additional Graphs:


**You can find a breakdown of regional availability here.


Want to See Past Newsletters?

If there was COVID-related information in a past newsletter that you want to go back to, but find you’ve deleted it, you can always go to my legislative website (senatordembrow.com), click on “News and Information,” and you’ll find them all there.  Also, if someone forwarded you this newsletter and you’d like to get it directly, you can sign up for it there.



Here again are some resources that you will find useful:

If the above links are not providing you with answers to your questions or directing you to the help that you need, please consider me and my office to be a resource.  We’ll do our best to assist you or steer you in the right direction. 


dembrow signature

Senator Michael Dembrow
District 23

email: Sen.MichaelDembrow@oregonlegislature.gov
web: www.senatordembrow.com
phone: 503-986-1723
mail: 900 Court St NE, S-407, Salem, OR, 97301