Umatilla County Public Health announced vaccine clinics available this week for those who qualify under Phase 1a, but have not yet received a vaccine.

First phase individuals include, but are not limited to, employees of health care facilities, such as hospitals, clinics, dentist offices and physical therapy offices. Phase 1a also includes first responders, Department of Corrections employees, home health care providers and residents and employees of long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes and adult foster care homes.

According to an email from the health department, available times so far are Thursday, Jan. 7, from noon to 4 p.m. and Friday, Jan. 8, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Pendleton Convention Center, in a drive-thru format in the parking lot. The health department also stated Good Shepherd Medical Center is offering vaccine clinics, while supplies last, to qualifying parties on Jan. 7, from 7-11:30 a.m. and 1-6:45 p.m. and Saturday, Jan. 9, from 7:30-10:30 a.m.

According to the Oregon Health Authority, as of Monday, Jan. 4, only 51,275 of the state’s 190,500 doses of the vaccine have been administered so far. On Jan. 4, Gov. Kate Brown ordered OHA to work to speed up the vaccination process, with a goal of 12,000 vaccines a day. At that pace it would take until mid-October to vaccinate all adults in Oregon, according to the Oregon Capital Bureau.

COVID-19 cases in Umatilla County continue to rise after the holidays, with 497 new cases in the seven days from Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2020, to Wednesday, Jan. 5.

The county also announced two deaths of COVID-19 patients in the past week.

The county’s 57th COVID-19 death, announced Dec. 31, was a 66-year-old male who tested positive Dec. 10 and died Dec. 25 at Good Shepherd Health Care System in Hermiston. He had underlying medical conditions, according to the press release.

Umatilla County’s 58th death, announced Jan. 5, was 94-year-old male who tested positive Nov. 29 and died Dec. 29 at Sun Ridge Retirement Community in Pendleton. He had underlying medical conditions.

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