SALEM — Most Oregon counties would maintain or improve their COVID-19 risk rating next week according to preliminary data from the Oregon Health Authority.

Counties won’t officially find out where they place on the four tiers of risk level until Tuesday, Feb. 23. Another week of data will be included in the ratings and movement up and down is possible compared to current trends. “All data are provisional and subject to change,” OHA says on its website.

The Oregon Health Authority measures COVID-19 cases and positive test percentages each week. Every other week, it uses the numbers to adjust the position of counties on the four-tier risk chart of extreme, high, medium and lower risk.

Each category has different restrictions on businesses and activities.

Deschutes County barely made the drop from extreme to high risk last week when cases dipped to 195.3 per 100,000. Getting below the 200 mark moved the county out of the extreme risk category for the first time in several weeks. The county is currently on track for 159.6 cases per 100,000. The positivity rate has fallen to 3.4%. The current data is only through Feb. 13 and could be affected by numbers from an outbreak at Summit High School in Bend.

Crook and Jefferson counties will likely remain in the extreme category.

Multnomah, Clackamas and Washington counties are maintaining cases and rates that would allow them to stay in the high risk category.

But Umatilla, Wallowa, Union, Morrow and Harney counties appear to still be maintaining extreme level caseloads.

Wallowa County has seen a jump during the month of February, and currently had 139 cases — 37 of them this month. 

Lake County continues to be a center of COVID-19 infections, with 1,002.4 cases per 100,000 and a rising infection rate of 19.4% Statewide, Oregon has 181.3 cases per 100,000 and a test positive rate of 3.8% A full report of the most recent data can be found at www.oregon.gov.

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