The New Era - All about Sweet Home since 1929

New COVID cases surface in SH as county numbers rise


October 14, 2020

Sweet Home has two new cases of COVID-19, as of Oct. 7, which brings the overall total in the 97386 Zip code to 26 cases since the beginning of the pandemic.

Safeway has confirmed a second positive case of a store employee at the Sweet Home location.

“The most recent associate has not worked at our Sweet Home Safeway store since Oct. 7,” said Safeway Communications Director Jill McGinnis. “We have reaffirmed with all associates that they need to wash hands and disinfect check stands every hour and to practice social distancing.”

McGinnis added that employees with symptoms are asked to stay home. At press time, she had not responded to a question from The New Era whether all employees at the location would be tested or not.

Additional employees may be asked to “self-quarantine, depending on their contact with those diagnosed,” she added. The store will remain open.

Linn County saw a significant uptick in cases, with a record 31 new positive cases on Oct. 7 alone. There were 103 new cases in the county between Oct. 6 and 12.

The Oregon Health Authority wrote in a statement Oct. 8 that “most cases continue to be traced to outbreaks in long-term care facilities, workplaces and social gatherings.”

Linn County had one new reported death on Oct. 8, bringing the total to 14 deaths out of 678 total cases, a 2 percent death rate. The man was 75 years old, tested positive on May 9 and died on Aug. 26 at his residence. He had underlying conditions, according to OHA, and was one of 11 Oregon residents to die that day: a record death count for a single day in the state.

Every county in Oregon has now reported at least one COVID case, as the sole holdout, Wheeler County, had its first case this week. There are now only three counties in the entire country which have no reported cases of coronavirus.

According to the Center for Disease Control, COVID-19 spreads very easily, especially when an infected person is in close contact with others, or is in an enclosed, poorly ventilated space. Aerial droplets are the most common cause of infection, much more so than contact with contaminated surfaces, according to CDC guidelines.

Public health guidelines in Oregon require citizens to wear a face covering in indoor public places and outside whenever social distancing is impossible.

Stay 6 feet away from those who do not live in your household, and wash your hands. Stay home if you feel any symptoms of COVID-19, including a fever, chills, or a cough, and self-quarantine if you have been exposed to a positive COVID case.


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