COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Gov. Mike DeWine provided updates Thursday on COVID-19 and vaccination efforts in Ohio.

As of Feb. 11, a total of 931,437 (+2,806) cases have been reported in Ohio since the pandemic began, leading to 12,577 (+721) deaths and 48,269 (+189) hospitalizations. A total of 1,161,056 Ohioans — 9.93% of the state’s population — have started the vaccination process. 

Governor Mike DeWine made several key announcements for Ohioans Thursday, touching base on the statewide curfew to more folks eligible for the vaccine.

“So, the curfew actually expired officially at noon today so there’s no curfew,” said DeWine, talking about the end of the statewide curfew.

DeWine said he wanted to see if the confirmed hospitalizations related to COVID-19 dropped below 2,500 for seven straight days. Here are the counts for the past seven days:

  • Feb. 5: 2,172
  • Feb. 6: 2,026
  • Feb. 7: 1,969
  • Feb. 8: 2,011
  • Feb. 9: 1,980
  • Feb. 10: 1,924
  • Feb. 11: 1,862

But it’s something that could come back, depending on what happens in the future with the coronavirus.

“Understanding that it’s a lagging indicator,” DeWine said, pointing at COVID hospitalizations. “And the trend line is what you look at. Where’s the movement? movement’s down now, it’s great what’s going to happen in the future we don’t think we know”

“We had a big surge in deaths they all did not get reconciled the way it should have happened,” DeWine said, addressing the 4 thousand unreported coronavirus deaths.

The state says an error was made and over the next few days, those unreported deaths will be tacked on until we’re back on track. For example, Thursday’s numbers for total deaths were 721.
DeWine says 650 of those are from reconciliation, so 71 would have been the normal cases that would have come in.

There’s another group of people who will be added to the vaccination list next week, this one isn’t dependent on age.

Those who have conditions from childhood that would make them high risk for COVID are conditions like severe asthma or heart defects, down syndrome, and cystic fibrosis to name a few.

“We did not want to create barriers. When we talked how we were going to do this, do we require a doctor’s certificate, do we make them go in? And we just looked at this and said, look all you’re going to be doing is disadvantaging a poorer person or someone who can’t go through these barriers,” talking about how they chose this group.

All Ohioans 65 and up are eligible to get the vaccine.

The public health advisory map remained unchanged for the third straight week. Franklin and its surrounding counties are at level 3, or red. As long as the counties remain defined as high incidence by the CDC, they cannot drop to a lower level.

The state is in the process of vaccinating the school workforce, residents 65 and older, and those with certain medical disorders. DeWine said the state is going to leave vaccinations open for those groups for several weeks because of the limited supply. He said that as vaccine supply increases, it will be made available at more locations, including hospitals, pharmacies and eventually mass-vaccination sites.