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OAHHS Supports Coronavirus Emergency Declaration

PORTLAND, OR – Today, Becky Hultberg, President and CEO of the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (OAHHS), released the following statement regarding Governor Kate Brown’s declaration of a state of emergency due to the outbreak of COVID-19. OAHHS represents Oregon’s 62 acute care hospitals and works on behalf of the patients they serve to promote community health and to continue improving Oregon's innovative health care system. 
“By declaring a state of emergency, the Governor and the Oregon Health Authority Director are taking necessary steps to bring state government’s broad powers to respond to the outbreak of COVID-19 in Oregon. We support the Governor’s leadership in taking this step and support any additional actions to prepare and respond to this outbreak, particularly her focus on at-risk populations – older adults, those with underlying health conditions, and the unhoused. OAHHS and our member hospitals are in regular communication with the administration and local health departments to deliver accurate information and quality care to our patients and the public. Hospitals are on the front lines responding to the outbreak and are committed to providing critical inpatient and community health services to respond to this evolving situation. We are working with the state administration to address important issues such as inpatient capacity, additional supplies and equipment to keep our workers and patients safe, regulatory relief to ensure adequate staffing and clarity around changing requirements. We look forward to addressing these issues as we continue to fulfill our responsibilities around public health, infection prevention and disease management.”