A face mask. Photo: Chas Hundley

Starting April 19, all Oregonians aged 16 and older will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, Oregon Governor Brown announced Tuesday morning. 

Previously, adults and those aged 16 and over were scheduled to be eligible no later than May 1. 

The announcement comes in advance of President Joe Biden announcing another push to move the vaccine eligibility timeline forward, much as he did when he mandated that states allow adults to be eligible no later than May 1 during a primetime speech held March 11. 

With everyone 16 and older eligible beginning April 19, the end of a phased vaccine eligibility rollout is in sight, a rollout that saw timetables moved as more doses became available, definitions changed, and a clunky, sometimes-confusing group naming system of people eligible such as “phase 1B group 6” end. 

According to The New York Times, Biden is expected to announce sometime Tuesday that he will speed up the timeline for all states to allow every adult to begin vaccinations no later than April 19. 

“We are locked in a race between vaccine distribution and the rapid spread of COVID-19 variant,” Governor Brown said in a press release.  “Today, Oregon will pass the threshold of 2 million vaccine doses administered. And yet, in communities across Oregon, COVID-19 is spreading at concerning rates. We must move as quickly as possible to get more shots in arms. Beginning April 19, all Oregonians over the age of 16 will be eligible to receive a vaccine.”

“However, whether before April 19 or after, it’s critical that we continue to focus on equity in our vaccine distribution efforts. Oregon’s Black, Indigenous, Latino, Latina, Latinx, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, and communities of color have been disproportionately hard-hit by this disease. We must reach Oregonians where they are, including those who may not have easy access to health care or the ability to take time off from work.”

Brown said that the state will focus on ensuring vaccine access to frontline workers and people with underlying conditions over the next two weeks. 

“My office will work closely with the White House to ensure Oregon receives our fair share of federal vaccine supplies, so we can continue with a fast, fair, and equitable vaccine distribution process.”

ANother announcement is expected later on Tuesday regarding risk levels of Oregon’s counties; Washington County is currently listed at “Moderate Risk.” 

Coronavirus and vaccine information can be found at coronavirus.oregon.gov, or by dialing 211. To enter your name into a scheduling tool that can connect residents with vaccine providers, visit getvaccinated.oregon.gov.

New cases, vaccinations, and deaths

The OHA reported on April 5 that there were 248 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19, which brought the state total to 167,128. The 14-day trend in Washington County, according to an April 6 New York Times report, shows average daily cases at 45 with 7.4 cases per 100,000 people. 

COVID-19 vaccinations increased in the state immunization registry by 22,131 new doses, and of that total 14,314 doses were administered on April 4 while another 7,817 jabs were provided on previous days but not entered into the registry until April 4, an OHA news release said.

Oregon now has administered more than 1 million doses of Pfizer, 929,632 doses of Moderna, and 50,004 single doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines. To date, the number of vaccines delivered to sites across Oregon is 1,225,575 Pfizer doses, 1,102,200 Moderna doses, and 105,800 Johnson & Johnson doses. 

The number of patients hospitalized in Oregon with COVID-19 as of April 5 was 177 — a jump of 27 from the prior day — and 42 of those patients were in intensive care unit beds when the information was reported. 

The death toll in Oregon sits at 2,392. 

To view regularly updated statistics regarding COVID-19 vaccinations in Oregon visit this page of the OHA website.