A once in a lifetime pandemic. Portland protests that stretched from late May 2020 to November, and beyond. The unprecedented Oregon wildfire season. A run of extreme heat we hope will never be repeated (but fear will be).
The Oregonian/OregonLives newsroom has spent the past 16 months covering all of that and more. It has been a sometimes exhilarating and often exhausting experience. To those journalists who ventured out last week in 100-plus degree weather to cover the news, the hardy band of photographers and reporters who turned out night after night for protests, the ones who headed toward the fire lines, I salute you.
On Friday, Feb. 28, 2020, reporter Fedor Zarkhin published the news of Oregons first reported coronavirus case. Shortly thereafter, The Oregonian/OregonLives newsroom reorganized around virus coverage to ensure as many angles as possible were covered. As we were soon to find out, the COVID-19 outbreak would touch nearly every aspect of our lives.
Now, as vaccinations abound and coronavirus cases drop, I wanted to let readers know about some changes in our pandemic coverage. One of the mainstays has been a daily post listing new cases, deaths and hospitalizations.
As of this coming week, we will post the numbers weekly instead of daily. Thats in recognition that the case numbers have dropped significantly in the past few months, as vaccines rolled out, and it allows us to free our journalists to do deeper reporting.
The editor who organized and led much of our COVID-19 coverage, Brad Schmidt, says, This past week marked a clear turning point in the pandemic across several fronts.
First, he said, Oregon saw average new cases drop below 200 a day, the lowest point since September.
Second, Schmidt says, Gov. Kate Brown has lifted nearly all coronavirus restrictions. And third, the Oregon Health Authority announced it would discontinue holiday and weekend reporting of several key data points. The state instead will release that information on the next business day.
Going forward, our weekly update will include new cases, deaths, and other key statistics. That weekly story will publish online Mondays or, in the event of holidays, the following business day.
For readers who want to stay up on the latest numbers, The Oregonian/OregonLive will continue to update data online every day the Oregon Health Authority releases new stats.
That means you can continue visiting https://projects.oregonlive.com/coronavirus/ to see up-to-date figures on cases, deaths, hospitalizations, vaccinations and more. Data analysts Mark Friesen and Dave Cansler have worked behind the scenes to add features to that page, including a section devoted to county-level data.
Our coronavirus newsletter, which has been delivered five days a week, will move to twice weekly.
What wont change: Our commitment to delivering thorough, accurate news about COVID-19 and its many effects.
Zarkhin and reporter Aimee Green will continue to look for in-depth stories related to the pandemic. Schmidt says that will include examining virus variants, efforts to improve vaccination rates among Black, Indigenous and people of color populations, and progress on vaccinations for children younger than 12.
Education reporter Eder Campuzano will track plans to reopen schools safely and issues that arise there for parents, students and teachers.
Business reporter Mike Rogoway will keep an eye on Oregons Employment Department. The department generated lots of news over the months as it struggled with antiquated computer systems, COVID-10 outbreaks in call centers and unprecedented demand due to layoffs.
In fact, The Oregonian/OregonLive is currently pressing the state to release how much taxpayer money was lost to unemployment fraud in Oregon during the pandemic.
The amount could be significant. The Associated Press reported earlier this year that California alone estimated it sent out $11 billion in fraudulent payments. Washington state was also hard hit, estimating $650 million in losses in 2020, though it has worked to recover $370 million.
Oregon has released limited information on its losses, arguing that releasing more would make the system vulnerable to additional fraud.
The Oregonian/OregonLive also remains committed to other pandemic-related business news. Jamie Goldberg has spent months reporting on workplace issues, payroll help for businesses large and small and landlord-tenant relief. She will continue on these subjects, while also assuming some editing duties.
Goldberg and Rogoway also are following the recovery of downtown Portland. Read our work on that project at oregonlive.com/downtown.
Thanks to our subscribers for supporting all of this important public service journalism.
The Mutts comic is going on sabbatical starting July 5, 2021.
Comics fans: Mutts will be replaced temporarily by Curtis on the comics pages. The creator of Mutts, Patrick McDonnell, is taking a six-month sabbatical to work on another project. That gives us the opportunity to give readers a glimpse at a fresh strip. Let me know what you think of Curtis, which starts Monday. The creator of the strip, Ray Billingsley, bases the comic on his own childhood. Its described as humorous, thought-provoking (with) bursts of pure zany fantasy.
Follow this link:
Letter from the Editor: Were changing the cadence of our coronavirus coverage - OregonLive
- Why Vaccinated People Are Getting Breakthrough Infections - The New York Times - July 24th, 2021
- Coronavirus in Illinois: 7,983 New COVID Cases, 47 Deaths, 139K Vaccinations in the Past Week - NBC Chicago - July 24th, 2021
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- China Has Rejected A WHO Plan For Further Investigation Into The Origins Of COVID-19 - NPR - July 24th, 2021
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- Scarred by Covid, Survivors and Victims Families Aim to Be a Political Force - The New York Times - July 22nd, 2021
- Two-thirds of Indians have coronavirus antibodies, survey shows - Reuters India - July 22nd, 2021
- Coco Gauff tests positive for the virus, another blow for the Tokyo Olympics. - The New York Times - July 22nd, 2021
- Cats Are Better Than Dogs (at Catching the Coronavirus) - The New York Times - July 20th, 2021
- Oregon sees 777 new coronavirus cases over the weekend, nine more COVID deaths - KATU - July 20th, 2021
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- COVID-19: Vallance corrects mistake to say 60% of people being admitted to hospital with coronavirus are unvaccinated - Sky News - July 20th, 2021
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- Despite Positive COVID-19 Results, Team USA Will Be Ready For Tokyo Olympics : Live Updates: The Tokyo Olympics - NPR - July 20th, 2021
- Coronavirus today: The weekend continued the dangerous trend; deaths top 6,000 in Arkansas - Arkansas Times - July 20th, 2021
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- 3 Texas Dems test positive for coronavirus while in D.C. - POLITICO - July 20th, 2021
- Three Texas House Democrats who traveled to Washington, D.C., test positive for coronavirus - The Texas Tribune - July 18th, 2021
- Fauci says natural origins theory of coronavirus is still the most likely - CNN - July 18th, 2021
- COVID by the Numbers: Coronavirus Metrics in Each of Illinois' Health Care Regions - NBC Chicago - July 18th, 2021
- Yankees Game Postponed After Positive Covid Tests - The New York Times - July 18th, 2021
- 'Bridgerton' and Coronavirus: Positive Tests Halt Production in UK - The New York Times - July 18th, 2021
- The Latest: 3 lawmakers who fled Texas over vote have virus - Associated Press - July 18th, 2021
- Germany lists Greece and the Netherlands as coronavirus risk areas -RKI - Reuters - July 18th, 2021
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- Florida adds 45,604 coronavirus cases, 231 deaths in the past week - Tampa Bay Times - July 18th, 2021
- Coronavirus: Canada set to overtake US in terms of fully vaccinated population as it happened - Financial Times - July 18th, 2021
- Led Study Helps in the Fight Against the Coronavirus Pandemic - United States Geological Survey - July 15th, 2021
- Many Jobs Lost During the Coronavirus Pandemic Just Arent Coming Back - The Wall Street Journal - July 15th, 2021
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- Myanmar sees record coronavirus deaths and infections - Reuters - July 15th, 2021
- Statement on the eighth meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee regarding the coronavirus disease (COVID-19)... - July 15th, 2021
- Unvaccinated may require tougher tactics amid COVID-19 surge - Los Angeles Times - July 15th, 2021
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- A Woman Died Of COVID After Contracting 2 Variants At The Same Time, Researchers Say - NPR - July 14th, 2021
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- Death Toll Rises to 92 in Fire That Gutted Iraq Hospital Coronavirus Ward - The New York Times - July 14th, 2021
- Summer camps hit with COVID outbreaks are schools next? - Associated Press - July 14th, 2021
- Summer Vacation Is Not Going to Keep Coronavirus at Bay. Only Jabs Will. - Bloomberg - July 14th, 2021
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- Breath-Based Coronavirus Tests Are Being Developed - The New York Times - July 11th, 2021
- Coronavirus cases in the Netherlands surge more than 800% in one week - BNO News - July 11th, 2021
- Halloween Haunt, Winterfest returning to Kings Island this fall after coronavirus cancellation - dayton.com - July 11th, 2021
- Americans will need masks indoors as U.S. heads for 'dangerous fall' with surge in delta Covid cases - CNBC - July 11th, 2021
- COVID-19: What you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic on 9 July - World Economic Forum - July 11th, 2021
- Coronavirus survivors: Wed like to hear your story of resilience and courage - SILive.com - July 11th, 2021
- Headache? Runny nose? These are among the new top 5 Covid symptoms, study says - CNBC - July 9th, 2021
- COVID-19 In Maryland: More Than 100 New Cases Reported Friday - CBS Baltimore - July 9th, 2021
- OC Residents and Businesses Grapple With Masks, Vaccine Verification Policies Amid Coronavirus Reopening - Voice of OC - July 9th, 2021
- Officials Tighten Restrictions In Seoul Amid Another Wave Of COVID-19 Infections - NPR - July 9th, 2021
- Coronavirus: Inbound travelers to isolate until receiving test results - The Jerusalem Post - July 9th, 2021