Malheur County gets the OK to open eligibility to Group 7 effective immediately

The Governor’s Office today approved Malheur County’s request to open COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to Group 7 of the state’s vaccine timeline. Effective immediately, frontline workers, people living in multi-generational households, and anyone age 16 and older with an underlying health condition can be vaccinated, in addition to the previously eligible groups.

The county’s request was submitted to the Governor’s Office in the form of a letter on March 19 that also addressed county size as it relates to COVID-19 risk assessment and differences between county and school metrics. The other two requests were not addressed in today’s approval.

“This is welcomed news from the state,” Malheur County Health Department Director Sarah Poe said. “This week, for the first time in over a month, Malheur County’s test positivity and case rates showed an increase in the two-week report released by the Governor’s Office. That’s not something we want to see become a trend, and the only way we’re going to keep both of those rates down – and Malheur County open – is through widespread immunity. Vaccines work, they’re safe, and we’re ready to administer it at our weekly clinic tomorrow to everyone who is eligible.”

The MCHD/Incident Command team will host a vaccine clinic tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Four Rivers Cultural Center. The clinic is open to the following:

As more Americans become vaccinated against COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention has updated its guidance to reflect new information as it is available. As of March 23, the CDC has stated that it is generally OK for fully vaccinated* people to:

  • Gather indoors with fully vaccinated people without wearing a mask.
  • Gather indoors with unvaccinated people from one other household without masks (unless any of those people or anyone they live with has an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19).
  • Not quarantine after exposure

*Fully vaccinated means at least two weeks since receiving the second dose of a two-dose vaccine or two weeks after receiving a one-dose vaccine.

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