Covid weekly report for Oct. 21: Salem-area cases up, hospitalizations flat

The number of people diagnosed with Covid increased in the Salem area over the past weeks, while hospitalizations remained mostly flat. 


As of Friday, Oct. 21, Salem Hospital had 15 inpatients with Covid, two in the ICU and one on a ventilator. 

There were 354 of 415 adult acute and critical care beds in use, and 425 total hospital beds in use.

The hospital recently expanded its licensed bed capacity from 494 to 644 with the addition of a new tower, but that total includes every potential licensed bed at Salem Hospital including those dedicated to specific uses, like pediatrics, inpatient psychiatry, and labor and delivery.

Lisa Wood, Salem Health spokeswoman, said the number of hospitalized Covid patients over the past week has ranged between 12 and 21. Last week, Wood said the daily number was between 13 and 18 Covid inpatients.

Region 2, which is Marion, Polk, Yamhill, Linn, Benton and Lincoln counties, had 24 people hospitalized with Covid as of Oct. 12, compared with 23 the week prior and 32 two weeks ago.


The number of new Covid cases reported increased statewide and in Marion County, but decreased in Polk County. This data is for the week ending Oct. 19. 

Marion County: 50 new Covid cases per day on average, a rate of 100.5  cases per 100,000 residents.

That’s up from 34 average daily cases last week. 

6.2% of Covid tests this week were positive, down from 7.5% last week.

The Oregon Health Authority reported no deaths of county residents with Covid in the past week.

Polk County: Nine new Covid cases per day on average, a rate of 69.7 cases per 100,000 residents. 

That’s down from an average of 9.6 daily cases last week.

7.7% of Covid tests this week were positive, the same number as last week.

The Oregon Health Authority reported no deaths of county residents with Covid in the past week.

Oregon: 543 new cases per day on average, up from 528 average daily cases last week; 7.2% of tests positive, compared with 8.2% last week.


The Oregon Health Authority switched to a new data dashboard showing trends in cases, hospitalizations and deaths by vaccination status, updated on the second Wednesday of each month. 

The most recent data as of Oct. 3 shows Covid infection, hospitalization and death rates continue to be highest among Oregonians not vaccinated against Covid compared with those vaccinated as recommended, which includes a booster shot.

In August, the state recorded 17 deaths with Covid per 100,000 unvaccinated adult Oregonians, compared to one death per 100,000 adults vaccinated as recommended. Hospitalization rates in August were 70 per 100,000 unvaccinated adults compared to 19 per 100,000 vaccinated as recommended.


Oregon’s mask mandate lifted on March 11 at 11:59 p.m. 

Contact reporter Rachel Alexander: [email protected] or 503-575-1241.

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Rachel Alexander is Salem Reporter’s managing editor. She joined Salem Reporter when it was founded in 2018 and covers city news, education, nonprofits and a little bit of everything else. She’s been a journalist in Oregon and Washington for a decade. Outside of work, she’s a skater and board member with Salem’s Cherry City Roller Derby and can often be found with her nose buried in a book.