The number of people hospitalized in Ohio because of the coronavirus is growing rapidly and raising the possibility that elective procedures could be postponed, hospital officials and Gov. Mike DeWine warned on Monday.
More than 4,300 people are currently in the hospital with COVID-19 related symptoms, a 59% increase from just two weeks ago. That figure includes more than 1,000 on intensive care units and more than 570 on ventilators, according to state Health Department data.
“The high volume of these numbers is now overwhelming the system,” DeWine said.
At the Cleveland Clinic, the growing numbers of hospitalizations is complicated by a shortage of nearly 1,000 Clinic health care workers, either because they have the coronavirus or they’re under quarantine, said Dr. Robert Wyllie, Chief of Medical Operations.
In Lima in western Ohio, coronavirus patients are entering St. Rita’s Medical Center faster than other patients can be safely discharged, said Mercy Health-Lima president Rhonda Lehman.
In southwestern Ohio, hospitals are approaching the point where the number of COVID-19 patients will outnumber non-coronavirus patients, said Dr. Richard Lofgren, president and CEO of the University of Cincinnati HC Health system.
In central Ohio, coronavirus patients have increased from 400 at the beginning of the month to 960 on Monday, said Andrew Thomas, chief clinical officer at the Ohio State Medical Center.
“We can’t sound the alarm bell loud enough for people in Ohio to change their behavior,” Thomas said, who encouraged people to limit Thanksgiving gatherings.
The 7-day rolling average of daily new cases in Ohio has risen over the past two weeks from 4,467 new cases per day on Nov. 8 to 7,618 new cases per day on Nov. 22, according to an Associated Press analysis of data provided by The COVID Tracking Project.
Locally, the Miami Trace Local School District reported, “Since our report on Friday, the Fayette County Health Department has confirmed four positive cases within the Miami Trace School District: 1 Staff Member (non-teaching position), 1 HS Student, 1 MS Student, and 1 Elementary Student. We experienced a significant reduction in quarantines during the contact tracing of these cases and contribute that to our current Plan B-Hybrid model. Please continue to implement all safety protocols in order for our students to receive at least some in-person instruction if we are not in full capacity. We greatly appreciate your support.”
Fayette County Public Health recently shared information from Licking County Health Department via social media. The information is as follows:
COVID-19’s incubation time is 14 days with a median time of 4-5 days from exposure to symptom onset.
Approximately 97 percent of people with COVID-19 who develop symptoms will develop those symptoms within 11.5 days of infection.
The graphic shared by FCPH shows an example of the virus progression as follows:
-Day one: exposure to COVID-19
-Day five: the person feels well and tested negative for COVID-19
-Day eight: the person enjoyed Thanksgiving with 17 family members while contagious
-Day 10: the person develops symptoms and tests positive for COVID-19