Marion County Prevention Newsletter - October 2020

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Health Promotion & Prevention Pieces

Prevention Newsletter Cover Photo


We hope to increase communication with our many diverse partners within Marion County and in the community. Each quarter we highlight selected programs, share information about events & resources, and share ways you can be involved in healthy local activities.

What's in this Article

Save the Date - Awareness & Trainings

Upcoming Trainings

Click here for an extensive list of more health promotion and prevention trainings



October 31, 2020

Halloween COVID-19 Safety

🦇 Marion County has created tips for surviving this Halloween during COVID-19 🧟

👻Find out more in English & Spanish here🎃

Halloween Trick-or-Treat Suggestions



November 19, 2020

The Great American Smokeout

Quitting smoking isn’t easy. It takes time. And a plan. You don’t have to stop smoking in one day. Start with day one. Remember, tobacco addiction is both mental and physical. For most people, the best way to quit will be some combination of medicine, a method to change personal habits, and emotional support from loved ones.


Make a plan. Get support. Lead a healthier life. Visit for resources to help yourself or someone you love quit smoking. Need more information? Click the link below for more details. 

Great American Smokeout



November 1-30, 2020

National Diabetes Awareness Month

The American Diabetes Association has a lineup of activities to join to increase healthy eating and active living: 

National Diabetes Awareness Month

Wildfire Information

FEMA Wildfire Relief

As all residents of Marion County know, the month of September 2020 has been exceptionally difficult for Oregonians. Over one million acres of forest had burned across the state, and locally residents from Idanha to Lyons had to evacuate. Hazardous air quality entered into our valley, giving Oregon (at that time) some of the worst air quality in the world.

As rains come and fire fighters work incredibly hard to contain and extinguish the remaining flames, Marion County enters into a long term plan of recovery. While this crisis has brought our community to it's breaking point, we are reminded of the strength and resiliency of our Santiam Canyon communities as we set out to rebuild together.  


For those in need of assistance due to fires, see below some available resources: 

  • Anthony Hall Resource Center (Including FEMA & Red Cross): 11758 Sublimity Rd SE, Sublimity, OR. Open Mon-Fri 10am-7pm & Sat 10am-4pm
  • Gates Community Church Resource Center (Hot kitchen by Silverton Lions & Elks): 40070 Gates School Rd, Gates, OR.  Open Mon-Sat 10am-4pm
  • FEMA Disaster Assistance:
  • Santiam Canyon Wildfire Relief Fund: Immediate & long term support available

Additional resources and information can be found at: 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information



Marion County continues to see a high rate of COVID-19 cases in our community compared to state averages. As we move into fall and the holiday season, we need to continue to be diligent in preventing the spread of the virus.

The prevention tips below can help keep you and your family safe from COVID-19:

  • If you are sick or have been exposed to an individual with a confirmed case of COVID-19, please stay home.

  • Wear a face covering anytime you are in public, including outdoor areas where physical distancing can be difficult.

  • Physically distance yourself 6 feet from others who you do not live with to prevent transmission of the virus through close contact.

  • Wash or sanitize your hands frequently and avoid touching your face.

  • Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces regularly. In your home, this can include doorknobs, counter tops, electronics, and other surfaces.

  • While gathering indoors with friends and relatives is not recommended, gathering outdoors can be a safe alternative. Limit gatherings to small groups (10 or fewer), encourage all guests to wear a face covering, and maintain physical distancing to prevent the spread of the virus.

Another important consideration as we combat COVID-19 is the flu vaccine. Getting a flu vaccine this fall can reduce your risk of getting flu and help save medical resources needed to care for people with COVID-19. It’s important for everyone to do their part to stay healthy this flu season.

More information about COVID-19 in Marion County and tips to keep yourself safe and healthy this holiday season are available on our website at or Facebook at


CDC Mask Up Sleeve Up


Additional Resources:

 The following are reliable sources for information about the novel coronavirus.

Tobacco & Vaping News

Tobacco Use Among Teenagers

Youth Tobacco Use



Resources to Quit Vaping

Oregon Quit Line : The Oregon Quit Line is a free, telephone and web-based program that helps youth and adults quit vaping ​cannabis and nicotine. It offers free confidential, evidence-based counseling and materials. Callers 18 years and older can receive Nicotine Replacement Therapy in the form of patches or gum.

The Quit Line is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

English: 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or

Spanish: 1-855-DÉJELO-YA (1-855-335-35692) or

TTY: 1-877-777-6534


This is Quitting: This is Quitting powered by truth® is a free, confidential, 24-7 texting program for young people who vape. Text DITCHJUUL to 88709 or




Smoking Increases COVID-19 Risk

Smoking & COVID-19



Top Health Experts and leading Health Organizations worldwide warn that smoking could increase the risk of acquiring COVID-19, and increase the severity of health problems caused by COVID-19.

Dr. Nora Volkow, Director of the National Institutes of Drug Abuse, states that “because it attacks the lungs, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 could be an especially serious threat to those who smoke tobacco, marijuana, or who vape.” This is because, as the FDA states, "smoking cigarettes can leave you more vulnerable to respiratory illnesses, such as COVID-19. Smoking is known to cause lung disease, inflammation and cell damage throughout the body, and can weaken your immune system, making it less able to fight off disease." Chronic secondhand smoke exposure can also increase the risk for complications from COVID-19. 

Since COVID-19 is still new, more population based studies are needed. The World Health Organization reviewed all literature available in late June, and found that at the time of their review, the available evidence suggests that smoking is associated with increased severity of disease and death in hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

In addition, Stanford University conducted a population study in July of youth age 13-24 who use e-cigarettes and cigarettes, and found that COVID-19: 

  1. Diagnosis was 5 times more likely among ever-users of e-cigarettes;
  2. Diagnosis was 6.8 times more likely among past 30-day dual users;
  3. Symptoms were 4.7 times more likely among past 30-day dual users.

Tobacco and e-cigarette use screenings are recommended for health clinics and testing locations, as well as cessation education. It is also recommended that tobacco and e-cigarette users quit to reduce potential COVID-19 transmission and severity. 


Free, confidential, evidence-based counseling and materials are available to quit e-cigarette and tobacco use. Smokers and concerned loved ones can call the Oregon Quit Line, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

English: 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or

Spanish: 1-855-DÉJELO-YA (1-855-335-35692) or

Smokefree Oregon

Substance Misuse News

Alcohol Misuse is a Concern During Times of Crisis

Stress During Times of Uncertainty


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), consensus is emerging among disaster researchers that psychological disorders and substance abuse increases in the aftermath of both man-made and natural disasters [1]. Recent data indicates people are drinking more during the COVID-19 Pandemic. For the week ending May 2, total alcohol sales in the U.S. were up by more than 32% compared to the same week one year ago. These figures have some medical experts worried.


The World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) have issued communications warning people to avoid excessive drinking, saying it may increase COVID-19 susceptibility and severity. Beyond that, alcohol consumption is already a major public health problem in the U.S., the NIAAA says. The CDC states from 2006 to 2010, “excessive alcohol use was responsible for an annual average of 88,000 deaths, including 1 in 10 deaths among working-age adults aged 20 to 64 years.” And studies have linked alcohol consumption to an increased risk of breast and other cancers.


While it is too soon to definitively know the effects of the pandemic on drinking patterns or how alcohol consumption impacts COVID-19, Yale Medicine experts say there are logical concerns based on what has already been proven about how alcohol changes the human body.

Continue Reading the Full Article Here

Communities who come together can create lasting, local, culturally appropriate solutions to risk factors of alcohol and substance misuse. Within the past year, Marion County formed the Substance Misuse Prevention Coalition and the Community Health Improvement Plan Steering Committee to positive, local solutions to alcohol misuse. These groups are made up of community partners from various business, government, and non-profit organizations. If you are interested in learning more about these coalitions, email us at


Learn more about local data that informs these groups: 

Problem Gambling News


COVID-19 Effects on Problem Gambling

Problem Gambling during COVID-19 Pandemic


The COVID-19 Pandemic has created an environment that is harmful to those who experience problem gambling.


In Oregon, it is estimated that 2.6% of adult Oregonians (83,800) experience disordered gambling. In addition, an estimated 5.4% of Oregon adults have shown signs of disordered gambling. While Oregon does have free treatment for gamblers and their loved ones, the pandemic has brought people with problems gambling little relief. In fact, it may be exacerbating their addictions.


“Almost all of the factors that are believed to contribute to gambling harms now exist in enhanced or increased measures,” says Alan Feldman, a former casino executive who now chairs Nevada’s problem-gambling advisory committee. Mass layoffs and stockmarket declines create pressure to win back lost income and savings. In addition, many already struggle with substance abuse. The isolation brought on by lockdowns and increasing opportunities to gamble online has served as a roadblock for those striving for recovery. 

For adults who choose to gamble, the Oregon Problem Gambling Prevention Services suggests that everyone #Reflect on their gambling habits, review #Resources available, and #Renew their commitment to gamble responsibly. For more information, or for anyone affected by problem gambling, go to 


Click here to learn more about COVID-19 and Gambling



Oregon Problem Gambling Prevention Services recognizes "Gaming" as a risk factor to gambling


Video Gaming & Gambling


Gambling and gaming often can be viewed as similar activities, and within the gambling industry the terms are often used interchangeably. Merriam Webster has two definitions for gaming:

  1. the practice or activity of playing games for stakes – gambling
  2. the practice or activity of playing computer or video games.

To blur the lines further many gaming activities now include gambling features and vice versa. Loot boxes (in game purchases for random purchases) and freemium games (free games with in game point purchases) are now common in video games. Video Lottery Terminals, such as through the Oregon Lottery and at casinos, are video styled games that are the most common cause of problem gambling in Oregon.


Due to the intersection or “convergence” of these activities, Oregon Problem Gambling Services (PGS) is including gaming in problem gambling prevention efforts as it relates to gambling. Visit or email us at for more information. 

Health Joke of the Season

It is important for us to de-stress and take a deep breath, relax, and laugh. We hope this helps brighten up your day! 


Health Joke Sept 2020

Health Equity for All Spotlight


People of Color Disproportionately Affected by COVID-19

Each quarter, Marion County Health Promotion & Prevention will provide insight into a population that is increasingly susceptible to health inequities. The hope is to educate our various partners and frame an issue in population health in a positive way. See below this quarters segment of Health Equity for All - People of Color & COVID-19. 


CDC Health Equity Image


Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, released July 24, 2020 - 

Long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put many people from racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting sick and dying from COVID-19. The term “racial and ethnic minority groups” includes people of color with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. But some experiences are common to many people within these groups, and social determinants of health have historically prevented them from having fair opportunities for economic, physical, and emotional health.


There is increasing evidence that some racial and ethnic minority groups are being disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Inequities in the social determinants of health (such as education, occupation, income, housing, and healthcare access) affecting these groups are interrelated and influence a wide range of health and quality-of-life outcomes and risks. To achieve health equity, barriers must be removed so that everyone has a fair opportunity to be as healthy as possible.


These factors and others are associated with more COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths in areas where racial and ethnic minority groups live, learn, work, play, and worship. They have also contributed to higher rates of some medical conditions that increase one’s risk of severe illness from COVID-19. In addition, community strategies to slow the spread of COVID-19 may cause unintentional harm, such as lost wages, reduced access to services, and increased stress, for some racial and ethnic minority groups.


Marion County COVID-19 Incidence Rate

Data from the Marion County Data Dashboard:


Click Here to Read the Full CDC Article


One of the high level goals of the Marion County COVID-19 Incident Command System is "...To prevent the spread of disease through established evidence based public health strategies through an equity lens and endeavor to provide for the safety and wellbeing of All Oregonians, with emphasis on populations disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. To accomplish this, Marion County is working closely with trusted organizations in the Latinx, Pacific Islander, and Russian Old Believer/Slavic communities to identify disparities and root causes that lead to COVID-19 transmission disparities and create local, culturally appropriate solutions to reduce COVID-19 transmission and severity. Additional resources and grant funding has been and continues to be distributed to these trusted community based organizations through both Marion County and the Oregon Health Authority. 

Safe Hiking this Fall

Marion County Parks

Staying physically active during the COVID-19 Pandemic is a little more difficult then before. On nice, clear days - making sure to take time to yourself and enjoy the outdoors will benefit not only your mental health, but physical health as well. The Oregon State Parks Service has created the Prepare + Care campaign, with helpful tips to get you outside safely and  enjoy Oregon's beautiful fall season. 



  • Stay home if you feel sick
  • Check what parks are open near you - this is especially important during fire season
  • Choose a park close to home
  • Go when air quality is good:
  • Have a backup plan in case of overcrowding
  • Know what to expect about park services
  • Pack what you need at home - such as snacks, water, sunscreen, face coverings, and hand sanitizer
  • Keep your group sizes small - limit to your household 


  • If the park looks very crowded, consider heading elsewhere
  • Choose safe or low-key activities
  • Maintain physical distance from others
  • Wear your face covering around others
  • Know which facilities are open for visitor use
  • Remember that all normal park rules still apply


Click Here to Read the Full Article

For Educators: Supporting Students Socially and Emotionally During Distance Learning

Distance Learning


Article summarized from - See full article here


Many students are experiencing high levels of stress as school schedules change due to the coronavirus pandemic. Some students may be separated from friends and stuck at home. Others might be worried about getting sick. Students whose families are experiencing financial worries or illness are especially vulnerable. There are ways you can support students socially and emotionally even if they’re not physically in your classroom every day.


School—whether it’s done online, in person, or a mix of the two—can give students a sense of normalcy. But it’s important to acknowledge the anxiety students might be feeling. Chronic stress and trauma can interrupt the learning process. You can help by incorporating social-emotional learning (SEL) in your teaching. SEL can help students learn better.


Here are some tips to help you focus on these areas during distance learning:

  1. Schedule regular check-ins with students and their families.

  2. Teach strategies for organization, planning, and self-regulation.

  3. Read and discuss current events.

  4. Assign a project that encourages students to be “helpers.”

  5. Share stress-reduction and mindfulness strategies.

Read the Full Article Here for more tips and details. 


Click Here for More Ideas to Connect with Students

December 2020 Newsletter Preview

Marion County Health Promotion & Prevention will be initiating the Community Health Improvement Plan planning committee, which has three focus areas around Mental Health Supports, Addiction Services, and Housing. Our December Newsletter will build upon this Newsletter with more actionable items. Keep your eyes pealed in December!


We hope you and your family stay safe and healthy during these uncertain times!