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The original item was published from 6/19/2020 8:11:07 AM to 7/19/2020 6:05:04 PM.

News Flash

Health & Human Services

Posted on: June 19, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Press Release:Cowlitz County Applies for Variance to Advance Modified Phase 3

Cowlitz County entered Phase 2 of the Re-Opening Washington Plan on May 23, 2020. Cowlitz County has
unfortunately seen an increase in cases the last two weeks, with the rate of cases per 100,000 residents
per fourteen days at 39. The increase in case counts is concerning, especially as the increase in percentage
of tests positive demonstrates the rise in cases cannot be explained by increased testing alone. Health
officials have been able to link new cases to known cases in the last 4 weeks 75% of the time, which is
higher than the overall rate during the pandemic (66%). Case counts are one of several metrics taken into
consideration when applying for variance to Phase 3.

Hospitalizations remain low, the hospital reports adequate capacity, testing is accessible in the county,
cases and contacts are reached quickly, and no outbreaks in long term care facilities have occurred in
Cowlitz County. Given these circumstances the Cowlitz County Health Officer has recommended, and
Cowlitz County has applied for, variance to implement a subset of Phase 3 modifications as noted below:

• Allow outdoor recreational activities, the use of play structures, and sports gatherings of up to 25
people while maintaining distancing (increased from 5)
• Allow indoor gatherings of up to 10 people while maintaining distancing (increased from 5)
• Allow customer facing government services with safety plans
• Allow libraries and museums to operate with safety plans
• All other activities as described in Phase 2

The application for variance is currently underway for consideration by the state. Cowlitz County Health and
Human Services and the Incident Management Team will continue to provide local updates on the Cowlitz
COVID-19 coronavirus webpage at

Follow us at:
Twitter - @CowlitzDEM
Instagram - cowlitzcountydem
Facebook - Cowlitz Covid-19 Incident Management Team
Previous Press Releases: 

Cowlitz County COVID-19 Contacts:

Cowlitz COVID-19 Info. Line 1-888-683-8676
Noncompliance Inquiry Line
Noncompliance Inquiry Form 


Public Information Officers Contacts:

(PIO) Main Line (360) 577-3107
(PIO) Email (questions) 
(PIO) Media Line (360) 442-7082


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