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New COVID-19 Records Set In Ohio, Chris Christie Joins DeWine In Calling For Masks

Ohio Department of Health

Ohio Thursday reported a new record number of COVID-19 cases, with 2,425 in the past 24-hours - surpassing the previous record set Wednesday.  

According to the state's color-coded public health advisory map, 39 counties are now red, representing 74% of the state's population.  And Ohio Governor Mike DeWine says 94% of the population lives in high incidence counties.

DeWine says three counties - Hamilton, Cuyahoga and Clark - are on the watch list, which means they have ticked six of the seven criteria for the state's highest alert level.  

Continuing the trend in recent weeks, DeWine says informal settings seem to be the source of the increase, where people let their guard down and drop their masks and social distancing.  Dewine was joined in his coronavirus briefing by Republican Chris Christie. The former New Jersey governor says he had been diligent about wearing a mask for seven months, but dropped his guard during four days at the White House.

"I thought I was safe. And I was wrong. I got tested every day when I walked into the grounds of the White House. I was assured, sitting in the third row of the Amy Coney Barrett ceremony that everyone in the first three rows had been tested that day, and tested negative. I was assured that everybody in debate prep had been tested. So, I took my mask off. And three days later, I began to feel what I call the freight train of symptoms that happen with COVID-19."

Christie spent seven days in hospital isolation.  DeWine says hospitalization is a "lagging indicator" often occuring days or even weeks after the diagnosis.  He says the surge of cases in recent weeks could lead to a dramatic rise in the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19, decreasing the number of beds for car accidents, heart attack and other illnesses.  

DeWine says that three weeks ago, there were 853 COVID-19 patients in Ohio hospitals.  Thursday there were 1,293, and the daily number of people hospitalized continues to rise. 

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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