Lane County extends pandemic emergency declaration

Lane County will remain in a state of emergency because of COVID-19

Posted: Sep 1, 2021 11:34 AM

EUGENE, Ore.-- Lane County will remain in a state of emergency because of COVID-19, likely through the end of the year.

During a meeting Tuesday, the Lane County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to extend the emergency declaration through Dec. 31. Without the extension, the emergency declaration would have ended Wednesday.

The county cited a number of reasons for extending the declaration, including the Delta variant and rising hospitalizations.

“Lane County is not an island. Lane County is the second largest regional hospital capacity hub - second only to Portland - and we are doing more than our fair share to take care of others,” said COVID-19 Incident Commander Steve Adams.

Adams noted some of the COVID-19 patients at RiverBend hospital are coming from outside the county, putting an even greater strain on resources. August saw some 5,600 cases of coronavirus, which Adams said represents 27% of the total cases reported in the county since the beginning of the pandemic.

Keeping the declaration allows the county to spend more money on its response to the virus, among other things.

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