COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — An Ohio State University doctor believes the number of COVID-19 cases people are developing daily is vastly higher than what is being reported.
“The number of actual cases reported is a huge undercount,” said Dr. Carlos Malvestutto, an associate professor of infectious diseases at Wexner Medical Center.
Over the past week, Ohio’s case count has been hovering around 20,000 cases per day, according to Ohio Department of Health data.
Based on Malvestutto’s estimates, that number could actually be anywhere from 60,000 to 100,000 cases.
“Part of the reason is the fact that a lot of cases some people are testing at home with home tests, but they’re not reporting their positive test results,” he said. “And at the same time, there are a lot of people who have COVID who are not even getting tested. So the real number is likely many times higher than that, very likely well over threefold higher or fivefold higher.”
Malvestutto said getting vaccinated and boosted is still the best line of defense against the virus. And also, while at-home tests still remain hard to get ahold of, stay home whenever you exhibit COVID-19 symptoms— vaccinated or not— until you can get tested.
“Our state is experiencing the highest number of COVID-19 driven in-patient hospitalizations, ICU admissions, patients on ventilators that we have seen throughout the entire pandemic. And sadly, these beds continue to be filled with better than nine out of 10 times by the unvaccinated,” state health director Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff said at a news conference last week.
The thousand of Ohio State students who live in campus housing are required to test as soon as they arrive back in central Ohio.
“I believe that it is necessary to do this,” Malvestutto said. “Because if we are going to have the students on campus, and you can imagine that, what we’re trying to do is to control the pace of the spread of the infection. And the only way to do that is to detect cases and actually move them into isolation quickly.”
You can watch the full interview with Dr. Malvestutto in the video below.