How soon could COVID-19 restrictions in Ohio end? Maybe by July 4

Coronavirus

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Could Ohio celebrate Independence Day without worries of COVID-19? Gov. Mike DeWine hopes so.

In an appearance in East Cleveland on Friday, DeWine was asked how soon he thought he might be able to lift his pandemic health orders. He did not give a direct answer but instead used a baseball analogy.

“I’ve described opening day in Cleveland: Indians, 30% capacity,” he said. “But we could be moving away from that by May 1. And I would hope that by the time we get to July 4, we might be full capacity. It depends on how many people get vaccinated.”

DeWine announced Thursday the benchmark for when he would lift the health orders — once the state achieves 50 cases per 100,000 people over two weeks — but he did not provide a timeline.

To reach that, the daily number of new cases essentially would need to go below 415 for 14 days. But in the past seven days, that number has yet to dip below 1,200, so it will take time for it to drop that far.

One of the health orders in place involves sports venues. Currently, the state has capped seating for outdoor venues at 30% of capacity and indoor venues at 25% of capacity.

But the supply of vaccine is expected to increase over the next several weeks, giving hope the cases will continue their decline from earlier in the winter.

Getting back to the Cleveland Indians, their home opener is April 5. And they do have a home game on July 4, against the Houston Astros.

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