Jefferson County Reports First Coronavirus Case—Though the Person Isn't Actually In Jefferson County | Local News | Bend | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon
The Source Weekly’s reporting is made possible by the power of your support. Be a part of it!
Pin It

Jefferson County Reports First Coronavirus Case—Though the Person Isn't Actually In Jefferson County 

Cases are reported by county of residence—meaning tourist locales like Bend could have more cases than we know

A person who lives in Jefferson County is the county's first positive case of novel coronavirus in that rural county. The thing is, the person doesn't even live Jefferson County.

click image Mt. Jefferson, which sits in Jefferson, Linn and Marion counties. - JSAYRE64, WIKIMEDIA
  • jsayre64, Wikimedia
  • Mt. Jefferson, which sits in Jefferson, Linn and Marion counties.

The person lives out of the state right now, but because each case is counted by the person's county of residence, according to public health guidelines, they're counted here, and not where they're actually living, Jefferson County Public Health officials announced Thursday. The person has not been in Central Oregon recently, and they are cooperating with public health, officials said.

Having a positive case reported among people living inside Jefferson County would be significant, because it remains among a group of rural counties in Oregon without a reported positive case. As of Thursday's tally from the Oregon Health Authority, six other Oregon counties besides Jefferson—including Baker, Coos, Gilliam, Harney, Lake and Wheeler counties had not yet reported any positive cases. Crook County had one reported case as of Thursday.

County of residence information is also significant, because it highlights a potential vacuum in reporting of cases in tourist areas, such as Bend and wider Central Oregon. With people traveling in and out of Central Oregon often for leisure or to stay in second residences, it's not clear whether area hospitals or health providers may be treating people whose primary county of residence is not in Central Oregon—and thus, whether we have more cases inside Central Oregon counties than we know about. St. Charles Medical Center denied our recent request for residence information on patients it is treating for COVID-19, citing HIPAA concerns.

"This case highlights the way our public health system works," Jefferson County Public Health's press release read Thursday. "Regardless of where a test is conducted, the county of residence remains the primary reporting classification."

See all our Coronavirus coverage at our Coronavirus HQ.

About The Author

Nicole Vulcan

Nicole Vulcan has been editor of the Source since 2016. While the pandemic reduced "hobbies" to "aspirations," you can mostly find her raising chickens, walking dogs, riding all the bikes and attempting to turn a high desert scrap of land into a permaculture oasis. (Progress: slow.)
Pin It


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Conservation Controversy

    Conservation Controversy

    Local irrigation districts have a plan to conserve water in the Deschutes River and protect endangered species, but environmental groups say it isn't enough
    • Nov 4, 2020
  • The Christmas Tree That Almost Killed Us

    The Christmas Tree That Almost Killed Us

    A local couple reflects on what went wrong after getting a ride out of the wilderness by Deschutes County Search and Rescue
    • Dec 23, 2020
Today | Fri | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed
The Father's Group Juneteenth Pre-Party Fundraiser

The Father's Group Juneteenth Pre-Party Fundraiser - Open Space Event Studios

Sat., May 21, 5:30 p.m.
Submitting an event is free and easy.

Newsletter Signup

Get Central Oregon daily news
directly in your inbox

Get Social

Latest in Local News

  • Schenkelberg Resigns

    • May 18, 2022
    Bend will lose two elected officials at its City Council Meeting on May 18 More »
  • Cover Your Grasses

    • May 18, 2022
    New data on fire risk and a study on fuel reductions in high desert ecosystems comes as Central Oregon approaches fire season More »
  • Rental Housing Black Hole

    • May 18, 2022
    The median home price in Bend rose to over $750,000 in May, a 30% jump from the same time last year. More »
  • More »

More by Nicole Vulcan

Want to advertise with us?

For info on print and digital advertising, >> Click Here

© 2022 LAY IT OUT INC | 704 NW GEORGIA AVE, BEND, OREGON 97703  |   Privacy Policy

Website powered by Foundation