See a March 2020 report on Ohio’s first COVID-19 case in the video player above.

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The Ohio Department of Health on Thursday reported 8,332 new COVID-19 cases as the state simultaneously crossed the third anniversary since seeing its first coronavirus patient.

While new COVID-19 cases are being reported at a rate much higher than at the start of the pandemic, Ohio is nowhere near its biggest spike during the past three years. The case rate also declined compared to the week prior, when the state was nearing 10,000 weekly COVID-19 infections.

The state's peak case increase in a single day was 21,664 on Jan. 20, 2022, the same year that Ohio broke more than 3 million total coronavirus cases. To date, 41,802 Ohioans have died from the virus.

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the first case in Ohio stemmed from a 49-year-old man who had just returned on March 6, 2020, to Columbus. He had come back from a cruise on the Carnival Valor ship and began experiencing coronavirus symptoms the next day.

Patient zero's test results would later come back positive at 8 p.m. on March 13, 2020, according to the Ohio Department of Health. By the next day, 54 other people in the surrounding area underwent testing for the virus, and Columbus Public Health had declared a public health emergency.

Preempted by the first case, government and health officials said The Arnold would bar all spectators from the athletic competitions and cancel its trade show. The move was out of an abundance of caution over the virus, but the event's planners weren't on board with the decision from the start.

The third anniversary of Ohio's first COVID-19 case occurred simultaneously with the U.S. House of Representatives passing the COVID-19 Origin Act. Heading to President Joe Biden's desk after a unanimous 419-0 vote, the bill would require the director of national intelligence to declassify information related to the origins of where the virus came from. Differing accounts from intelligence agencies show several theories, including "natural exposure to an animal infected with it," or a "laboratory-associated incident" in China.

Jumping from 2020 to present-day 2023, ODH has been reporting COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, deaths and vaccinations weekly instead of daily after new infections slowed to a low level after the omicron wave. Over the past seven days, the state averaged around 1,190 new coronavirus cases per day. The 425 hospitalizations reported by ODH in the past seven days -- about 61 per day -- was more than the 395 reported last week, but fewer than the 435 hospitalizations in the week prior.

COVID-19 deaths decreased alongside hospitalizations in Ohio. ODH said 53 people died from the virus, which fell below both the 63 deaths the week prior and the 71 reported two weeks before.

COVID-19 metricTotalChange (past 7 days)
*Ohio Department of Health reports weekly on Thursdays.

Ohio saw little change in the number of people getting COVID-19 vaccinations over the past week. Ohioans starting the vaccine process dropped to 1,685, compared to 1,688 in the week prior. Another 1,707 finished vaccination by getting their second dose, slightly down from 1,797. Around six in 10 Ohioans are partially or fully vaccinated.

COVID-19 metricTotalChange (past 7 days)
Vaccinations started (one dose)7,574,362+1,685
– % of all Ohioans64.80%
– % of Ohioans 5+68.28%
Vaccinations completed (two doses)7,022,123+1,707
– % of all Ohioans60.07%
– % of Ohioans 5+63.49%
*Ohio Department of Health reports weekly on Thursdays.