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Report: Oregon vulnerable to vaccine-preventable diseases

Officials with Lane County Public Health said they are not surprised to hear Oregon is on the list, with more than 160 cases of whooping cough cases in Lane County.

Posted: Jun 14, 2018 6:37 PM
Updated: Jun 14, 2018 7:17 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- A new report shows Oregon is one of 12 states vulnerable to outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases.

Officials with Lane County Public Health said they are not surprised to hear Oregon is on the list. They said there are now more than 160 cases of whooping cough in Lane County, impacting 40 schools.

KEZI spoke with Dr. Patrick Luedtke with Lane County Public Health. He said Oregon has a very high non-medical exemption rate for vaccines. He said it's about 7 percent, compared to most states, which have a 1 to 2 percent rate.

"A small number of people may have a true severe allergy to a vaccine, and if that's the case, we certainly don't want to give that to them,” Dr. Luedtke said. “But the vast majority of people who choose to exempt, it's not for an allergy, it's for some philosophy or for some system they are following. And our state allows that to occur, and people take advantage of it."


He said the number of whooping cough cases in the county are slowing down. Luedtke said more people are getting vaccinated, especially children and teens who were not previously vaccinated before the recent outbreak.

He said for those who are still reluctant to get vaccinated, there are several resources in the county that are accessible and affordable for people to utilize.

"That includes the White Bird Clinic, the Volunteers and Medicine Clinic, the Community Health Centers of Lane County that has a sliding scale, you can be seen based on what you're able to pay,” Dr. Luedtke said. “We're lucky in this community to have these safety net clinics to help."

Dr. Luedtke said whooping coughing cases tend to peak in July and August. To prevent that peak from happening, Luedtke said the county is working closely with summer camps and schools.

To review the report, click HERE

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 41348

Reported Deaths: 649
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah8955159
Marion5684107
Washington561274
Umatilla332844
Clackamas306165
Lane229427
Malheur189737
Jackson16176
Deschutes109813
Yamhill98315
Linn78815
Polk64315
Jefferson6009
Morrow5436
Lincoln51113
Union4652
Benton4336
Klamath4053
Wasco34715
Douglas3425
Hood River2771
Josephine2623
Columbia2531
Clatsop2370
Coos2360
Baker1143
Crook1002
Tillamook700
Curry571
Wallowa402
Lake340
Harney210
Sherman180
Gilliam110
Grant110
Wheeler10
Unassigned00
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