COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The number of coronavirus cases per capita in Ohio continues to fall, although at a pace that could still take weeks to reach the level needed to end health orders in the state, according to state data.
Those orders will be lifted once the state hits the mark of 50 coronavirus cases per 100,000 people for two weeks, Gov Mike DeWine said March 4. Those orders would include the statewide mask order and limits on attendance at sporting events and indoor entertainment events.
Ohio saw 143.8 cases per 100,000 people as of Thursday, according to newly released state Health Department figures. The number has dropped from 731 cases on Dec. 3 to 445 cases on Feb. 3, and to 155 cases last week.
Nearly 2.5 million people have received at least one dose of the vaccine in Ohio, or about 21% of the population, according to the Health Department. More than 1.4 million or about 12% of the population have completed vaccinations.
The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in Ohio did not increase over the past two weeks, going from 1,801.43 new cases per day on March 2 to 1,456.43 new cases per day on March 16, according to an Associated Press analysis of data provided by The COVID Research Project.
“This week, Ohio’s long-term care facilities reported just 70 new COVID-19 cases,’ Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine said Thursday. “Compare that with the 157 new cases reported the previous week, and the 2,832 new cases reported at the peak of the pandemic in December.
“In addition to wearing masks, social distancing and cleaning, there is no doubt of the significant impact vaccination is having on protecting nursing home residents and preventing severe illness and death among those most targeted by the virus.”
DeWine reiterated, “As numbers continue to improve, it’s important to continue following safety protocols like wearing your mask and social distancing.”
The News Journal contributed to this story.