Benton County’s rates remain relatively low in COVID-19 cases in comparison to surrounding counties

General Corvallis City Section Graphic

The Baro Staff

Benton County Health officials report average COVID-19 cases per 10,000 people in both Linn, Benton and surrounding counties, giving community members a snapshot of how the Corvallis community compares to the state of Oregon.  

With the most recent data from Sept. 29, Benton County has 294 confirmed cases, averaging 31.2 cases per 10,000 people. Benton County remains well under the state average of 74.7 cases per 10,000 reported from Benton County Health Officials. 

The Oregon counties that are being hit the worst with confirmed cases are:

Malheur County with 503 per 10,000

Morrow County with 386 per 10,000

Umatilla County with 350 per 10,000 

The counties immediately surrounding Benton come in at:

Linn County with 38.2 per 10,000

Polk County with 61.5  per 10,000

Lane County with 30.7  per 10,000

Lincoln County with 96.1  per 10,000

“We cannot account for all of the factors. However, we do know that Benton County initiated public information and community outreach early on—before our first case even occurred,” Alyssa Rash, Benton County Public Information Officer, said via email.

Rash also said that the case growth in Oregon only began to steadily climb since the reopening and a loosening of travel restrictions.

Demographic concerns have also begun to widen in recent weeks away from those who are immune compromised as younger generations are seeing a spike, according to Rash.

“Recently, the 20-29 age group has seen a large increase in COVID-19 cases statewide,” Rash said via email. “This holds true for Benton County as well. In Benton County the 20-29 age group has gone from just 16% of all cases to 49%.

Rash said that this increase in a younger demographic is alarming, but since Oregon’s cases remain lower than some of the country’s hotspots, any rise can quickly skew statistics.

Rash also said that disproportionately statewide there are higher COVID-19 cases for Pacific Islanders, agricultural workers, food processing workers and economically disadvantaged groups. 

Benton County’s medical infrastructure has been able to keep up with demands of the pandemic. With clear protocols and personal protective equipment, local hospital, Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center, has adapted well and has yet to be overwhelmed with positive COVID-19 cases, according to Rash.

“There are some ongoing supply chain issues, which are seen throughout the U.S., but so far the hospital has been able to maintain a sufficient supply of needed equipment,” Rash said via email. “Medical facilities and Benton County Health Department continue to expect and plan for cases to increase over the next several months.” 

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