Governor Kate Brown added Lane County to the State’s County Watch List on Friday, October 16 – yet another sign that COVID-19 is spreading rapidly in our community.
“The Watch List signifies caution,” Governor Brown said. “When we are able to address community spread early on, the more likely we are to be successful in curbing that spread. While OHA offers support and resources to help county officials prevent further case spikes, it remains up to all community members to do their part.”
By being included on the watch list, the state will prioritize resources and assistance for Lane County, including increased monitoring and communication from OHA, contact tracing help, case investigation, and technical assistance. Lane County will remain on the Watch List for a minimum of three weeks and until our sporadic case rates drop below specific thresholds.
Every one of us needs to continue to take this threat seriously. The choices we make affect not only us and our families but our neighbors, our communities and the most vulnerable people among us.
The current Lane County COVID-19 alert level remains at high. We must continue to be vigilant about taking measures to limit contact and modify everyday activities to reduce exposure – washing our hands, wearing a mask, maintaining our distance and staying home when sick.
Face Covering Update – Face Shields No Longer Recommended
Effective October 19, Oregon Health Authority updated statewide guidance on face coverings. This includes new provisions about workplaces, markets and events, some educational facilities, as well as information about face shields.
Updates to the statewide face covering requirements include:
- Face coverings are recommended in place of a face shield, except in limited situations when a face shield is appropriate such as when communicating with someone who is deaf or hearing impaired and needs to read lips.
- Face coverings are now required in all private and public workplaces.
- Face coverings are required in outdoor and indoor markets, street fairs, private career schools and public and private colleges and universities.
Read more about Oregon COVID-19 Mask Requirements.
Mask Up on the Trail
If you’re planning to hit the trail, make sure to bring your mask!
Masks or face coverings are required outdoors when you are within 6 feet of others. Many of our trails are narrow, requiring a mask when passing others.
Please remember these additional guidelines to keep you and your fellow hikers safe:
- Stay 6 feet apart.
- Walk single file and step aside to allow others to pass.
- Do not gather and avoid crowded areas.
- Stay home if you have a fever, respiratory symptoms or are just not feeling well.
Celebrating Halloween Safely
There are plenty of ways you can have fun this Halloween while avoiding the scare of being exposed to COVID-19 or unknowingly spreading the virus. Lane County Public Health is recommending that residents avoid traditional door-to-door trick or treating and “Trunk or Treat” events because these are high-risk activities for crowding among people outside your household.
Please consider low-risk alternatives to trick-or-treating and in-person celebrations. These could include activities with members of your household like carving pumpkins, doing a Halloween craft, or watching a spooky movie. If you dress up in a costume, be careful to plan a costume that allows you to wear a face covering. Halloween masks will not protect you or others from coronavirus.
Holiday gatherings on Memorial Day, July 4th and Labor Day led to increased case counts. This Halloween be extra mindful of your choices. Choosing low-risk Halloween plans can help to prevent the spread of COVID-19 illness, decrease the impact on our health care system and save lives.
Learn more about Holidays and COVID-19.
Keep Up the 4 Ws
- Wear a Face Covering– indoors and outside when you can’t maintain 6 feet of space, it’s a statewide requirement.
- Watch Your Distance – stay 6-feet apart from those outside your household and limit your gathering size.
- Wash Your Hands – often with soap and water for 20 seconds throughout the day.
- Wait It Out – stay home if you are sick.
See a list of Community Resources for physical and mental health, food, housing, businesses, employees, schools and children, as well as information in Spanish.
Also learn how you can help. Our partners have a significant amount of information available online. Please visit these resources for the most up to date information:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- State of Oregon
- Oregon Health Authority
- Lane County Public Health
Lane County Call Center: Open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m., 541-682-1380