SALEM, Ore. — Oregon Gov. Kate Brown released more details Friday about how the state will reopen once 70% of Oregonians 18 and older have received a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
The state is getting closer to the benchmark, having vaccinated 66.2% of its residents 18 and older, as of Thursday. To reach 70%, about 127,000 more people need to get a first dose of the vaccine.
The number of Oregonians getting their first COVID-19 shot each day has declined over the past couple weeks. The number decreased from more than 20,000 a day in mid-May to about 12,000 per day, where it hovered for a bit, but the numbers have gone down even more in the past few days. On June 1, only 4,885 people got a first dose.
Once the state reaches the 70% mark, Brown said she'll lift most state restrictions and shift to pandemic recovery. On Friday, she outlined the specific steps the state will take to lift restrictions at that time:
- All county-based metrics and health and safety restrictions will be lifted, including mask, physical distancing and capacity limit requirements
- The state won't require masks and face coverings in almost all settings, with some exceptions based on federal guidance, like airports, public transit and health care settings
- Vaccine verification will not be necessary because the same mask and social distancing rules will apply to all people, vaccinated or not
- The state will continue to strongly recommend that unvaccinated people and other vulnerable people continue to wear masks and practice other health and safety measures to stay safe from COVID-19
On Friday, Brown emphasized the importance of receiving the vaccine.
"This has really become a tale of two pandemics," Brown said. "If you are vaccinated, then you're safe, you can carry on safely without wearing a mask and social distancing. If you are not vaccinated, this virus still poses a very real threat."
Because children younger than 12 are not yet eligible to be vaccinated, some health and safety measures will remain place for schools and child care facilities:
- Students will resume a normal school year in the fall with local schools following health and safety guidance
- Students will go back to in-person school full-time, five days per week. The state is currently revising guidance for K-12 schools
- Some health and safety standards for child-care providers and youth programs will stay in place
- Recently revised workplace standards, including indoor mask requirements for unvaccinated employees, will remain in place for schools and child-care settings
- Individual colleges and universities will make decisions about health and safety protocols for the coming year, after considering forthcoming CDC guidance
Oregon reports 436 new COVID cases, 3 more deaths
OHA on Friday reported another 436 new COVID cases statewide and three more deaths connected to the virus.
The state's death toll is now 2,686 people and the number of known COVID cases in Oregon is now up to 202,675.
OHA released its weekly report Thursday, which showed a decrease in daily cases and hospitalizations but an increase in deaths from the previous week.
Oregon has now administered 2,246,996 first and second doses of Pfizer, 1,625,362 first and second doses of Moderna and 147,285 single doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines.
As of Friday, 1,893,574 people have completed a COVID-19 vaccine series in Oregon and there are 2,265,143 people who have had at least one dose.