News Flash Home
The original item was published from 6/24/2020 2:30:42 PM to 7/24/2020 6:00:05 PM.

News Flash

Health & Human Services

Posted on: June 24, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Press Release: Cowlitz Application for Modified Phase 3 of WA “Safe Start” Plan Temporarily Paused

Cowlitz County’s application for “modified-phase 3” in the governor’s phased approach for reopening has
been put on “pause” due to increased COVID-19 activity in the county. As of right now, the county does not
meet the metric for incidence of new cases reported during the prior two weeks. That metric is measured
by specimen collection date, and to account for the lag in reporting, the two-week period starts 6 days prior
to the current date. The target is <25 cases per 100,000 people in 14 days. Based on Cowlitz County’s
population, the target is 27 cases in 14 days. During the 14-day period June 5th to June 18th, Cowlitz
County had 62 new cases which is significantly above the target set by the state. When the application was
submitted on June 18th for the modified-phase-3 the incidence of new cases was 39 cases in 14 days.
Cowlitz County Health and Human Services (CCHHS) will continue to monitor the situation and work with
the State of Washington to move forward in two weeks.

Face Coverings: On June 23, 2020, Governor Jay Inslee and Secretary of Health John Wiesman
announced a statewide mandatory face covering order that will take effect Friday, June 26th. "The science
is clear that when we use face coverings, we limit the spread of droplets being passed on to others when
we talk, cough or sneeze. While some of us are wearing face coverings in public, we must increase usage
to best control the virus. Washington’s strategy to restart the economy and get people back to work will only
be successful if, together, we act safely and follow health recommendations," Wiesman said.

Cowlitz COVID-19 Incident Management Team (IMT) and Health officials share the community’s desire to
advance to Phase 3 and beyond. “Frustration and anxiety over evolving guidance throughout the pandemic
is understandable” said IMT spokesman Ralph Herrera. “At the end of the day, we all want to do our part
to reduce or eliminate the spread of the disease. The number of positive cases has significantly increased
in Cowlitz County and one way to reduce these cases is to wear a mask in public.” The IMT and the Cowlitz
Association of Sheriff and Police Chiefs (CASPC) will continue their on-going efforts to educate and inform
the public on all guidance updates as they become available.

As with previous orders, there will be specific exemptions for those who may be adversely impacted by
wearing a facial covering. These exemptions include those with certain medical conditions and children
under the age of two, who should not wear a face covering. Children aged two, three and four are
encouraged, but not required, to wear a face covering in public with the assistance and supervision of an
adult. Additional information can be found at
. Cowlitz County Health and Human Services and the Incident
Management Team will continue to provide local updates on the Cowlitz COVID-19 coronavirus webpage

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


Facebook Twitter Email