Reopening Crook County, Oregon (COVID-19)

Crook County was approved by the Governor’s Office and Oregon Health Authority (OHA) today for reopening under Phase I of the Reopening Framework.  Crook County Health Department wants to take a moment to thank everyone for the effort shown to keep this community safe.  The fact that Crook County has only had 1 confirmed case indicates that all the hard work has paid off.  Now please stay the course and continue to keep everyone safe as we enter the first phase of reopening.  

Crook County Citizens have done their part to keep the numbers low here.  You have stayed home, keeping yourselves and loved ones safe.  You’ve washed your hands, worn face coverings, and checked on neighbors.  And despite the fear and anxiety, this community has stayed united and together.  

It truly does take a village and the Crook County Health Department wants you all to know that it has taken a village – our village, and without the support of our residents and the work being done behind the scenes from not just the Health Department but all of our partners such as the City of Prineville, Law Enforcement, St. Charles Health System, Medical services and clinics, Staff and owners of the few businesses that have remained open to support all our needs, Emergency Management and the Command Team that has been working this incident every day since this started – THANK YOU !!!

These next steps will be difficult and it will take a lot of work to continue to follow the guidance for keeping our community safe.  It is understood that everyone is ready to get back to daily lives, the reality is that this may not happen for quite some time and there may be increases in cases across our state as the reopening of sectors brings more people out in public together.  

Our Reality:

The virus will be here until there is immunity, which is many months off and that means a vaccine.  


  • The primary tools are physical distancing and hygiene
  • Every restriction lifted increases the chance of transmission and may increase cases

The Reopening Plan:  

If you are a business approved to enter into Phase I please know your guidelines and where to get them before you open your doors.

As of Friday, May 15th the following sectors are approved to reopen (with new guidelines and physical distancing requirements)

    • Retail 
    • Personal Services
    • Restaurants, Bars, Breweries, Brewpubs, Wineries, Tasting Rooms, and Distilleries
    • Gyms
    • In person gatherings of up to 25 people

The following sectors are still in development and should be evaluated next week

    • Childcare for Essential Workers 
    • Summer camp, school, youth programs 
    • School Reopening 

Actions needed to keep up to protect our community and health care system:

  • Vulnerable populations must still stay home – 25.9 % of Crook County’s population is 65 and older which is a high-risk category
  • Limited visitations to nursing home, hospitals
  • Limited gatherings of not more than 25 
  • Limited travel
  • Increased hygiene, cleaning, and sanitation
  • Stay home when sick
  • Telework when possible – office workers have not been approved to return to the office in Phase I and to continue to work from home 
  • Wear face coverings when in public – when six feet of physical distance cannot be maintained

Guidance can be found here:

OHA has created signs for businesses to post and translations into multiple languages:

Next Steps:

Crook County will remain in Phase 1 for a minimum of 21 days, at which time there will be a full review before potential move to Phase II.  If the criteria of phase I cannot continue to be met, OHA will call an immediate meeting with local public health officials for further discussion and evaluation before the approval of moving into Phase II.

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