SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Gov. Kate Brown on Monday called for COVID-19 vaccination improvements as the Oregon Health Authority reported 728 new cases and six more deaths. Health officials initially reported 731 cases on Monday but said later that three Multnomah County cases were found to be duplicates.
State officials have received nearly 200,000 vaccine doses but have administered only about a quarter, a rate that places Oregon among the slowest performing states nationwide, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported.
Brown’s comments came after the state recorded its deadliest month, with at least 436 deaths among Oregonians with COVID-19 in December.
“Oregon, like most of the country, is not moving fast enough,” Brown said in a news release. “All states are grappling with the same logistical challenges, and while we are making steady progress, we must move even more quickly when every vaccination has the potential to save someone’s life.”
She said she directed the Oregon Health Authority on Monday to administer 12,000 vaccinations per day by two weeks from now.
Brown called it an all-hands-on deck-effort and said she directed the Oregon Health Authority to partner as widely as possible to make it happen, but didn’t give further details.
Hospitals and health systems across the state have inoculated about 3,500 Oregonians per day with some officials citing the holidays as one reason for the slow pace.