***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***
November 30, 2020
Eleven resident deaths related to outbreak
OKANOGAN — Okanogan County Public Health (OCPH) has received confirmation of the death of eleven (11) North Valley Extended Care residents related to a recent COVID-19 outbreak in the facility in Tonasket, Washington. A total of 32 residents have tested positive for COVID-19. OCPH sends their heartfelt condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones. Out of respect for the families, OCPH is not releasing further information about the deceased residents at this time. The 11 confirmed deaths brings Okanogan County’s total COVID-19 associated deaths to 26.
The employees at Extended Care have also been impacted and multiple caregivers are under quarantine until the CDC guidelines allow them to return to work. Two employees are currently hospitalized with COVID, and both are reportedly doing well. North Valley Extended Care underwent a routine Infection Prevention Survey following the outbreak and officials confirmed that the Extended Care team is managing this very difficult situation safely and professionally.
Long-term care facilities serve our most vulnerable populations whose age and health conditions put them at a higher risk for severe complications from COVID-19 and death. When community COVID-19 rates are high, such as those currently experienced by Okanogan County, long-term care facilities face increasing challenges to keep COVID-19 out of the facility.
OCPH urgently asks all residents of Okanogan County to be vigilant about protecting our community members, especially those who are most vulnerable and those who work with or come into contact daily with those who are most vulnerable.
Please continue to wear a mask, wash your hands, and avoid large gatherings. For the health of your family, neighbors, and friends, it is critical to wear a mask when in public. Every individual’s decision to socialize outside of their household has the potential to impact the health of our most vulnerable residents. Please mask up when out in public and protect one another.
For detailed information on Okanogan County COVID-19 data, visit: https://okanogancountycovid19.org/covid-19-data/ and https://spanish.okanogancountycovid19.org/datos-de-covid-19/.