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COVID-19 Update — August 5, 2021

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• COVID-19 cases continue to climb in the state and county due to the highly contagious Delta variant. Ohio’s COVID-19 per capita case incidence rate rose to 77.4 cases per 100,000 for the two weeks ending July 29, up from 48.5 for the two weeks prior.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine previously set 50 cases per 100,000 as a benchmark for lifting pandemic restrictions. But he said last week that he would not be reimposing new restrictions, such as mask mandates, as the “appetite” to do so no longer existed in the state, referencing resistance in the Republican-dominated Ohio legislature to such measures.

• Cases are growing faster than the state average in Greene County, where the case incidence rate rose to 113.7 this week. In fact, the county had the 10th highest per capita case rate over the previous two weeks, out of 88 Ohio counties. Other area counties in the top 10 were Montgomery (9th), Miami (7th) and Clinton (5th). In one week, the county’s moving seven-day average for new cases rose from 17 to 27 per day.

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• Hospitalizations in the state were up by 50% for the week ending Aug. 3, when 791 Ohioans were hospitalized with COVID-19. Greene County added 10 new hospitalizations over the week.

• Ohio’s positivity rate grew to 5% this week, from 3.6% last week. It is reportedly 7.6% in Greene County. A positivity rate of more than 5% means that transmission rates in a community are high and that testing might not be sufficient.

• According to the CDC last week, fully vaccinated people should wear masks indoors in public when in areas of “high” or “substantial spread,” measured by more than 50 new cases per 100,000 per week. Greene County is now listed as having “high” spread, according to the CDC’s website. Last week, its spread was “substantial.” The agency previously recommended all unvaccinated people continue to wear masks indoors in public.

• Nearly all of Ohio’s coronavirus hospitalizations in 2021 — 98.8% — have been of those who are not fully vaccinated, according to the Ohio Department of Health last week, addressing the issue of “breakthrough cases” among the unvaccinated. In addition, 99.5% of all deaths associated with COVID-19 in the state since January have been among those not fully vaccinated, the department reported.

• Four new cases of COVID-19 were reported in the 45387 ZIP code this week, the most in one week since early May 2021.

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