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As COVID cases begin to rise again, celebrate safely

Don’t let your holiday gathering become a super-spreader event. Heed these precautions.

With the omicron variant reaching Oregon and COVID-19 caseloads rising, Asante is urging employees to practice “safe celebrating” over the holidays.

Asante hospitals’ daily caseload reached 44 on Thursday, the highest level since the delta surge began to decline in the fall. Once again, hospitals are at capacity and elective surgeries are being canceled at ARRMC and limited at ATRMC and AACH due to discharge logjams. More than 70 inpatients are awaiting placement in an outpatient care facility.

Three cases of the omicron variant have been confirmed in the Portland area, and the variant is likely to spread throughout the state.

Asante urges everyone to become vaccinated against COVID-19 and receive a booster if eligible. Asante Employee Health and APP primary care clinics are offering the Pfizer/Comirnaty vaccine by appointment.

To prevent further spread of the virus over the holidays. The CDC suggests the following:

  • Get vaccinated as soon as possible.
  • Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth.
  • Stay 6 feet apart from others who don’t live with you.
  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. Use alcohol-based sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available.
  • Consider getting a COVID test before joining indoor gatherings with those who are not in your household.

To avoid a “twindemic,” employees are advised to get their flu shot before the Jan. 24 deadline. Flu shots are available at Asante Employee Health, APP clinics or retail outlets.

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