Oregon is reporting some of the highest numbers of new COVID-19 cases since the pandemic started more than two years ago. And Memorial Day weekend is expected to keep it going.
The Oregon Health Authority reported nearly 12,000 new cases last week and the state is averaging 1,685 new cases a day. That’s higher than all but 12 weeks since the start of the pandemic in 2020.
Hospitalizations in Oregon are expected to peak at 330 patients on June 9, according to the Oregon Health and Science University.
That will be 10 days after Memorial Day. Holiday weekend gatherings are expected to be the likely cause of the increase.
Gatherings are still permitted and masks mandates are not being reimposed, but medical professionals still recommend remaining cautious.
“It’d be great if everyone got outside during that holiday and then it would have less impact,” said Dr. Mike Johnson of St. Charles.
Dr. Johnson also predicted a local uptick in hospitalizations at St. Charles.
He said portion of the population has unintentionally contributed to the spread of COVID.
“Young children are very rarely hospitalized,” said Dr. Johnson. “If they do get COVID, they can spread it like wildfire.”
There is some relief expected now that children ages five to 11 are eligible for booster shots.
While holiday weekend get togethers may raise COVID cases, kids getting their boosters could help lessen the impact.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.