Ohio witnesses big increase in cases
The state continues an alarming trend of very high COVID-19 cases — seeing the number increase by more than 25 times what it was about two months ago.
The state was at 683.3 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents for the period between Sept. 2 and Wednesday, according to statistics provided Friday by the Ohio Department of Health.
In comparison,the state was at 27 cases per 100,000 people July 15 — just nine weeks ago.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers 100 cases per 100,000 to be high transmission areas for COVID-19 and recommends face masks while indoors at public places.
Ohio has 25 counties that have more than 1,000 cases per 100,000 residents with the lowest among the state’s 88 counties being Holmes with cases at 389 per 100,000.
Only one county in the state was above 100 cases per 100,000 on July 15.
The state was at 582.4 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents last week and at 472.4 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 two weeks ago.
It was at 338.1 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents three weeks ago. Four weeks ago, it was 259.2 cases per 100,000 and at 194.2 cases five weeks ago.
The delta variant among the unvaccinated, which spreads quickly, is almost entirely to blame for the increase Ohio has seen in cases since mid-July, said Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, ODH’s director.
The latest ODH ranking by county has Trumbull with the ninth fewest cases, with Mahoning in the lower quarter and Columbiana near the middle among the state’s 88 counties.
All three counties, like the rest of the state, continue to experience increases in the number of cases over the past two months.
Mahoning is 68th in the state with 630.6 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents.
It was 71st last week with 467 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents, 66th two weeks ago with 377.8 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 and 56th three weeks ago with 306.5 COVID-19 cases per 100,000. Four weeks ago it was 62nd with 220.4 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents and 66th five weeks ago with 158.3 COVID-19 cases per 100,000.
Trumbull is 80th this week with 484.9 cases per 100,000.
Last week it was 85th with 322.8 cases per 100,000 residents. Two weeks ago it was 86th with 266.2 cases per 100,000 and 87th three weeks with 203.6 cases per 100,000 residents. It was 75th four weeks ago with 198 cases per 100,000 and 64th five weeks ago with 162.1 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents.
Columbiana is 52nd this week with 776.4 cases per 100,000 residents.
It was 58th last week with 552.6 cases per 100,000 residents. It was 61st two weeks with 413.2 cases per 100,000 residents and 34th three weeks ago with 398.5 cases per 100,000.
Four weeks ago it was 25th with 333.7 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 and five weeks ago it was 52nd in the state with 172.7 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents.
The ODH measures cases per 100,000 residents among counties to get a fair comparison because total cases would result in more-populous counties ranking higher.
Meanwhile, Gov. Mike DeWine said Friday nearly 58 percent of the state’s public schools are mandating face masks in their buildings. Three days earlier, DeWine reported the number at 54.4 percent.
DeWine won’t reimpose a mask mandate, saying his fellow Republicans in the state Legislature would just veto it and that could cause confusion. But he is urging school districts to require face masks for everyone indoors in their buildings.
The 8,447 new COVID-19 cases Friday is up from the daily average of 6,349 for the past 21 days, according to the ODH.
The state has exceeded 5,500 daily cases in 15 of the past 18 days and been higher than 7,000 cases in seven of the past nine days, according to ODH data.
Friday’s total includes 380 cases in Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties combined.
About two months ago, all of Ohio was averaging about 260 cases a day.
The state had a total of 1,336,061 COVID-19 cases as of Friday with 1,189,438 presumed recovered and 21,471 deaths.
The ODH usually provides death information on Tuesdays and Fridays.
There were 206 COVID-19 deaths since Tuesday, a high number for three days in the state. That includes eight in Mahoning and two in Trumbull counties.
There were 6,221,395 people, 53.22 percent of the state’s population, who had at least started getting inoculated as of 6 a.m. Friday, including 11,898 in the previous 24 hours, according to the ODH.
In Mahoning County, 51.39 percent of the population (117,524 people) had received at least one dose with 49.12 percent of the population in Trumbull County (97,252 people) and 41.76 percent in Columbiana County (42,542 people) as of 6 a.m. Friday, according to the ODH.
There were 5,755,992 people, 49.24 percent of the state’s population,who finished the vaccinations as of 6 a.m. Friday, including 12,599 in the prior 24 hours.
In Mahoning County, 47.61 percent of the population (108,877 people) had completed the process and 45.19 percent of the population in Trumbull (89,474 people) and 38.77 percent of the population in Columbiana (39,503 people) had as of 6 a.m. Friday.
The Trumbull County Combined Health District has COVID-19 vaccination clinics at the Eastwood Mall in Niles 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday and from 1 to 3 p.m. Sept 25.