Hamilton County has once again moved to a red threat level on Ohio's Public Health Advisory System for COVID, as has Clermont County — two of four counties that made the jump this week.
"We're seeing more red counties this week," said Gov. Mike DeWine during a press briefing. "Again, that's not good. We have 11 red counties — more than we've seen at any point in September. Although many Ohioans are certainly working hard to keep this virus in check, unfortunately we're seeing a rebound in some areas of the state."
DeWine says the last time Hamilton County was "red" was July 30. The county currently has an average of about 50 new cases per day.
The data markers that Hamilton County has met to increase the threat level from orange to red are:
- Non-congregate cases: 92.31% of cases between Sept. 23-29 are in non-congregate settings.
- Outpatient visits: As of Sept. 29, the seven-day average for outpatient visits for symptoms related to COVID are 192.
- Hospital admissions: As of Sept. 29, the seven-day average for hospital admissions related to COVID are 1.43 with a peak of 2.71 average over seven days on Sept. 26.
- New cases per capita: There have been 737 new cases over the past two weeks, with an average of 90.16 cases per 100,000 people.
DeWine said his data teams have been unable to tell if the increases in cases in Southwestern Ohio are due to spikes at local colleges, but noted, "our colleges are doing a good job; they're fighting back. They've worked hard to keep these cases under control."
He also noted that universities in Hamilton County have contributed about 200 positive COVID cases to the overall count the past two weeks, but that those cases are "on the decline."
According to the University of Cincinnati's COVID dashboard, there are currently 21 residential students in isolation and 32 in quarantine, with a total of 47 student cases reported since Sept. 20.
For Clermont County, DeWine says it was last red on Aug. 20 and has seen an increase of 129 new cases over the past 14 days. He says local health officials are reporting outbreaks at longterm care facilities, a small outbreak at a business and some outbreaks associated with school sports teams.
For all of Ohio, there are 1,327 newly reported COVID cases today, "higher than what Ohio has reported during the past few weeks," says DeWine. There were 90 new hospitalizations, nine new ICU admissions and 13 deaths reported since yesterday.
For more info, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov.