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COVID-19 Cases Continue To Climb, Franklin County Back In The Red

Ohio Department of Health

Ohio continues to break records no one wants, with a single day total of 2, 178 new COVID-19 cases. 

Governor Mike DeWine says the state's positivity rate of 5.4%  is double the rate of mid-September, when it seemed numbers were declining.  And the public health advisory map is a sea of red and orange

"At this point we have 70 counties, 70 of our 88 counties, that are either red or high incidence.  That's 10 million Ohioans or 85% of the population that live in a county with a high risk of transmission."

High incidence is more than 100 cases per 100,000 residents, and is one of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria the state uses to evaluate the spread of the virus.

DeWine says his regular conference call with local health commissioners confirms the data that new cases are often spread in familiar settings.

"As one health commissioner said, people are complacent in places where they're comfortable, and that's human nature.  But what we're seeing many times is people who are with friends, maybe with family, letting their guard down - not wearing a mask, not keeping the social distance." 

Today's data shows 108 new patients have been admitted to the hospital and 43 to intensive care units, more than three times the three-week average.  While DeWine says hospital cpapacity is still ample, Dr. Nick Dreher of Metrohealth System warns that a surge of  COVID patients,threatens everyone.  

"When the beds start disappearing from COVID, they disappear for every disease.  And it makes everybody unsafe.  Even if you happened to have had COVID and even if you had immunity, if all this happens you don't have a bed for your heart attack, your stroke, your pneumonia."

Dewine says there are no immediate plans for new public health orders, but if the numbers continue to climb he is not ruling that out.

The latest numbers from the Ohio Department of Health are available here.

A native of Chicago, naturalized citizen of Cincinnati and resident of Columbus, Alison attended Earlham College and the Ohio State University. She has equal passion for Midwest history, hockey and Slavic poetry.
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