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Ohio's top doctor says the Delta COVID variant has gotten a "second wind"

A patient in the hospital with COVID
Mongkolchan Akesin
Patient suffering from COVID-19 in hospital

The number of COVID cases, hospitalizations, and deaths is increasing.

The pandemic in Ohio is getting worse, just days before the Thanksgiving holidays. The Ohio Department of Health reports one in seven patients in hospitals statewide is battling COVID, when it was 1 in 9 patients just three weeks ago.

Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff says there were 2800 COVID patients in hospitals statewide Wednesday. And more than 800 were in the Intensive Care Unit.

“In the last 21 days, hospitalizations have, in fact, increased by 23% and ICU admissions have increased by 15%. These numbers are, quite simply, going in the wrong direction,” Vanderhoff says.

There are 6,382 probable and confirmed cases of COVID during the past 24 hours. 4,505 of those cases are confirmed. Two days ago, that number was about 5,639. And it's not just the number of cases that is increasing. An average of 79 Ohioans has died each day during the past 21 days.

COVID case numbers for Thursday, November 18, 2021
Ohio Dept of Healthh
Ohio Dept of Health
COVID case numbers for Thursday, November 18, 2021

Vanderhoff says the COVID situation is likely to worsen during the upcoming holiday season when people are congregated indoors. He advises everyone over 5 years old who is eligible to get vaccinated or get a booster. And he says if more Ohioans had done that, the state probably wouldn’t be in this situation now.

Contact Jo Ingles at
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