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River Health Newsletter 11/16/2020

Download a PDF version of this newsletter here.

Zone 6 Covid Numbers

The Columbia River Gorge has only had a few new positive COVID cases this past week. Benton County had 91 percent of the new cases among the Zone 6 counties, mostly in the Tri-Cities area. Gilliam County only had one new case and Sherman County had no new cases.


Number of new cases listed below county name. Black dots are in-lieu or treaty fishing access sites.

The low numbers in the Gorge shows the hard work the river communities are doing to help fight the spread of COVID. To help keep numbers low:

  • Wear a mask when around others
  • Maintain social distancing
  • Avoid or limit being indoors with people not in your household
  • Regularly wash your hands

By working together, we can keep the river safe and protect our elders and most vulnerable.

Health Events

Tribal members can get free COVID testing at the One Community Health clinics in The Dalles and Hood River. To make an appointment, call (541) 386-6380.
Text ‘critfc’ to 47177 on a cell phone to get announcements for upcoming COVID testing events at select fishing access site. Fishery openings are also announced with this system.

COVID Vaccine

Vaccine trials are in the final stage of testing. Tribal health authorities and their partners are working to be prepared to handle and administer the vaccine when it is approved, which could be as soon as December or January. Since everyone can’t be vaccinated at the same time, a priority system will be used. The first group is front line workers like doctors and nurses. Next is vulnerable populations, including Natives and the elderly. After that, the general population.

Why should I get a flu shot?

Healthcare systems could be overwhelmed treating both patients with flu and patients with COVID-19. This means getting a flu vaccine during 2020-2021 is more important than ever.
While getting a flu vaccine will not protect against COVID-19, there are many important benefits, such as:

  • Reduce the risk of flu illness, hospitalization, and death.
  • Can also save healthcare resources for the care of patients with COVID-19.
  • May also protect people around you, including those who are more vulnerable to serious flu illness, like babies and young children, elders, and people with certain chronic health conditions.

Free flu shots available to tribal members from North Central Health District. Call (541) 506-2600 for more info or schedule an appointment. A free drive-thru flu clinic at the Lyle Activity Center will run 10a-noon on Nov 18.

Access Site Resources

Residents or users of in-lieu or treaty fishing access sites may contact the Fishing Site Maintenance Department crew (541) 980-2789 with requests for masks, hand sanitizer, soap cloths, and disinfecting spray (depending on availability). Contact CRITFC’s fisher support for assistance with food, clothing, and other wellness supplies at (971) 221-2546
Tribal members on the access sites can get food assistance, health care, and isolation/quarantine assistance. Contact One Community Health at (541) 386-6380 for more information.

Tribal COVID Resources

Tribal COVID information and resources pages:

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