COVID cases, positivity rates trending downward

People seeking vaccinations lined up early in the morning on Jan. 30 at Four Rivers Cultural Center in Ontario. Another first-round clinic will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday. Attendees are reminded to enter the Cultural Center on the south side through the theater entrance.


The back entrance of Four Rivers Cultural Center in Ontario was the place to be for COVID-19 vaccinations on Saturday morning. Those interested in receiving a shot were lining up early and maintaining social distancing measures for a start time of 10 a.m.

In an email on Monday afternoon from Erika Harmon, public information officer with Malheur County Health Department, explained more about the Saturday morning vaccination clinic.

“A total of 336 first doses of Moderna vaccine were administered by the Malheur County Health Department and Incident Command team. We had about 40 staff and volunteers working at the event. The second-dose clinic is scheduled at the same location on Feb. 27 beginning at 10 a.m. It is just for the people who were vaccinated on Jan. 30,” wrote Harmon.

She said that the level of interest shown by the community for this event “is encouraging,” but she also wanted to emphasize that “we have a long way to go before we reach community immunity.”

Harmon said that the department will continue to schedule the vaccine clinics “as vaccine is available.”

“We anticipate that going forward we will host at least one first-dose clinic each week,” wrote Harmon.

How many people in Malheur County have been vaccinated?

According to the email, Harmon explained how many people in the community have received a vaccine.

“Based on information we have received from our healthcare partners in the community, we estimate that close to 2,200 people have been vaccinated in Malheur County,” she wrote.

Harmon said that the scheduled vaccination clinics, which the department calls “P.O.D.s” or “points of distribution,” are listed on the calendar of events on the Malheur County Health Department’s website.

“This week, we have two closed second-dose PODs, on Wednesday and Thursday, and a first-dose POD on Saturday,” wrote Harmon, who went on to say that with clinics being on Saturdays, “we’re hoping to reach people in childcare, early learning and K-12 education.”

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