SALEM, Ore. - Oregon National Guard Citizen-Soldiers and -Airmen have vaccinated almost 300,000 people since Jan. 8, helping the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and regional medical partners distribute the COVID-19 vaccine.
Members of the Oregon National Guard have also been trained to assist 211 Information, a call center connecting people with health and social service organizations. Guard members have handled approximately 80,000 phone calls, providing information about testing, vaccinations, appointments and other community resources.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report 2,549,201 vaccine doses have been administered in Oregon, with 1,600,343 people vaccinated. Of those, 1,033,175 people have completed their series.
The seven-day average for new infections in Oregon is rising, at 650 new cases per day. More than 2,450 Oregonians have died of the coronavirus since the initial outbreak in March 2020.
Having military members support vaccination efforts will increase the distribution of the vaccine to everyone who wants to be inoculated.
In addition to the Oregon Guardsmen working at the largest mass vaccination site in Oregon, at the Portland Convention Center, 16 members of the U.S. Coast Guard Sector Columbia River are helping provide administrative support.
Oregon National Guard troops were activated in March 2020 to support the state’s COVID-19 pandemic response. They have distributed personal protective equipment throughout the state, established contingency hospital areas, assisted with the largest wildfire season on record last summer, and helped protect lives and property during civil disturbances.