Author: Lynne Terry - Oregon Capital Chronicle

Oregon Health Authority Director Patrick Allen returns to work after weeks of recovery

Oregon Health Authority Director Pat Allen during a press conference held December 17, 2021. Photo from YouTube Patrick Allen, the director of the Oregon Health Authority, returned to duty this week after a long absence. The agency declined to respond to requests for more information. He was working at his[Read More…]

Oregon Legislature passes bill mandating overtime pay for farmworkers

Senate President Peter Courtney, D-Salem, called the farmworker overtime bill a “good beginning.” (Ron Cooper/Oregon Capital Chronicle) Oregon is headed towards becoming the eighth state to mandate overtime pay for farmworkers. The pay bill passed its final legislative hurdle on Thursday and heads to Gov. Kate Brown, who appears ready[Read More…]

Oregon, California, Washington will lift most mask mandates on March 12

File photo: Chas Hundley In a surprise move, Gov. Kate Brown said Monday that Oregon, Washington and California will jointly lift their indoor mask mandate on March 12. Masks will no longer be required in schools but state officials will recommend they still be used, according to a news release.Seeking[Read More…]

Proposal to pay farmworkers overtime overcomes first hurdle in Legislature

Grain at a farm outside of Forest Grove. Photo: Chas Hundley A controversial plan to require overtime pay that would affect the 86,000 farmworkers in Oregon advanced on Tuesday along partisan lines. All seven Democrats on the House Committee on Business and Labor voted for House Bill 4002, which would require[Read More…]

Peak of omicron hospitalizations and cases in Oregon is over, forecast says

File photo: Chas Hundley The surge of people hospitalized or infected with omicron is over, according to the latest forecast from Oregon Health & Science University. The forecast, which influences the policy of the Oregon Health Authority, indicates that Oregon reached its peak, and the number of Oregonians infected or[Read More…]

Farmworkers plead for overtime pay as ag industry warns of harmful impacts

Grain at a farm outside of Forest Grove. Photo: Chas Hundley Emotional and passionate testimony stretched into the night Tuesday during a legislative hearing on a proposal to require overtime pay for Oregon’s farmworkers. Legislation put forward by two Democratic lawmakers would pay farmworkers time and a half after working[Read More…]

Oregon Health Authority will lift indoor mask mandate by end of March

File photo: Chas Hundley In a sudden turnaround, the Oregon Health Authority announced Monday it will lift the state’s indoor mask requirements by the end of March for indoor places, including schools. The announcement came on the same day that the agency filed a permanent state rule requiring masks indoors[Read More…]

Oregon soon could be on the mend from the pandemic with an expected drop in cases, officials say

File photo: Chas Hundley Oregon’s short-term Covid-19 outlook remains bleak, Oregon’s lead epidemiologist said Friday, with hospitals nearing a peak in the demand for hospital beds and case counts skyrocketing. But after that, the situation could improve, according to Dr. Dean Sidelinger, the state epidemiologist.Seeking applicants for Computer Lab &[Read More…]

Want a free Covid-19 test delivered? Households can sign up now

File photo: Chas Hundley The Biden administration’s effort to distribute free Covid-19 tests nationwide was supposed to start Wednesday. Instead, the government quietly began taking orders on Tuesday. Every household can obtain four free rapid antigen tests by going to CovidTests.gov and clicking through to a U.S. Postal Service site signup sheet and filling[Read More…]

Oregon Health Authority creates new hotline, website for Covid-19 patients

File photo: Chas Hundley With cases of omicron skyrocketing, the Oregon Health Authority is taking a new approach to tracking new Covid-19 infections.  Investigators are no longer trying to call those who test positive for the coronavirus. State and county health departments have been using such calls to trace exposures[Read More…]

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