“At our peak surge we may be as high as 6,000 to 8,000 new cases a day," Dr. Amy Acton said on March 26th during the state's then-daily coronavirus press conference.
This was a shocking prediction to many at the time — Ohio had only 867 total cases as of that day — but the former Ohio Department of Public Health Director said that stunning reality wasn't a matter of if, "but when."
"We will surge," she said.
And here we are. More than 6,500 new cases yesterday.
Pilloried by Twitter epidemiologists and sports bloggers-turned-infections disease experts (including Kyle Lamb, the COVID truther who claimed masks don't work and that the pandemic was a Chinese biowar who was hired this week by the governor of Florida to help with coronavirus data in that sad state), railed against and mocked by the Jack Windsors, Jim Jordans and Mike Trivisonnos of the world, insulted by the 'masks are tyranny' crowd and the subject of anti-Semitic, gun-toting protests on her front lawn that spurred her June resignation from the position, it turns out the good doctor was, in a real shocking development, right and the fabulist grifters were wrong.
Record-setting infection rates across the country. Record-setting new infections across Ohio.
Even the fabulists are, perhaps at last, coming to grips with the truth.
Ohio COVID-19 hospitalizations have hit record highs. Jack Windsor has spent recent weeks telling people this rise is fictional and evidence of "panic porn"— Tyler Buchanan (@Tylerjoelb) November 11, 2020
Today he reported that hospitals are in fact filling up. His supporters are confused and don't know what to make of it. pic.twitter.com/snJevLcQlb
This train doesn't stop on a dime, of course. The denizens of Jack Windsor, faced with reality, won't abruptly decamp from conspiracy land much like the MAGA "Stop the Steal!" sect won't acknowledge the true and factual results of the election once the performance art of the country's Republicans comes to a close.
And, by all accounts, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, who struggled to find a suitable replacement for Dr. Acton and settled on an attorney from the state's Bureau of Workers' Compensation department in lieu of an actual physician, will use his fireside, statewide chat this evening to politely admonish Buckeye land without taking any steps himself to stop the spread of the virus.
On the plus side, President-Elect Joe Biden has already identified experts for a COVID task force and promises to act urgently once he's officially in office, using this lead time to further spread the message that masks and social distancing save lives.
Which is exactly what Dr. Acton said he should do.
“We cannot wait two and a half months to start leading a messaging,” she told the New Yorker last week. "...Crisis leadership and communication is every bit as science based and crucial.”