KWSO News for Fri., Jan. 1, 2021

Yesterday, 16 individuals were tested for COVID-19 with 5 new cases discovered.  That brings the total number of new cases for this week to 16.  Currently there are 37 active cases of COVID-19 on the reservation with 61 close contacts being monitored.  Currently 6 people are hospitalized.  16 Warm Springs People have died from COVID-19

In Warm Springs, 400 doses of vaccine have been received and 260 doses have gone into people’s arms with more shots being scheduled for next week.  Community Health Manager Katie Russell talks about shipments of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine

She says the second dose of the vaccine will automatically be sent in time for them to be administered to those who received the first dose.  That series is 28 days apart.  Russell talks about vaccine distribution

They are working through giving shots to those 75 and older along with essential employees and staff at worksites that are in contact with the public.  Health Care staff, first responders and residents at High Lookee Lodge have already been offered the vaccine.  If you have questions or want to get on the list for the vaccine– call the Health and Wellness Center.  The process of vaccinating everyone in Warm Springs will take up to 6 months.

COVID-19 has claimed nine more lives in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 1,477.  The Oregon Health Authority reported early yesterday that there were 1,682 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 113,909.   As of Wednesday this week, 5,188 doses of vaccine were administered, raising the state’s total number of first vaccine doses to 38,698.  To date, 187,575 doses of vaccine have been delivered to sites across Oregon.

Because the number of COVID-19 cases in the community continues to be high, St. Charles will no longer allow hospitalized COVID-19-positive patients to receive visitors under most circumstances.  To protect St. Charles’ patients and caregivers, door screeners and Guest Services teams will notify any visitors who intend to visit COVID-19-positive patients that they will not be allowed to visitSt. Charles will once again encourage COVID-19-positive patients to use iPads for communication with their family members.  The decision was made to ensure the safety of  patients and caregivers, according to Dr. Jeff Absalon, the health system’s chief physician executive.

Ten shelter units arrived and were set up this past week, in the parking area behind the old Warm Springs Elementary Gym.  These units will be used to provide shelter to homeless individuals during the winter months.  The “Pallet Shelters” will provide a more COVID-19 safe environment for people who have been using the shelter set up inside the gym.  Generators will provide power to the 10 units.  The project used some CARES ACT funding and long term includes the addition of a food truck to provide hot meals to homeless people.  The effort is being coordinated by the Tribes’ Health & Human Services Branch.  Find an article about the Pallet Shelters in this week’s edition of the Spilyay Tymoo.