COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Franklin County Public Health Commissioner Joe Mazzola said he thinks we should all be very concerned about the rate at which COVID-19 is spreading in the community.

According to Mazzola, Franklin County is seeing a 7-day case rate of about 1,600 cases per 100,000 persons. 

“When you think about the CDC’s definition of what’s considered high transmission, that’s 100 cases per 100,000,” Mazzola said. “We’re seeing 16 times that, right now.”

Mazzola said the community needs to stay vigilant and take necessary precautions to slow the spread of the virus. He recommends residents wear a mask, be extra cautious when interacting with those outside their household and stay home when sick.

Mazzola hopes the number of new cases in the county plateaus soon.

“We don’t expect those numbers to drop for the next couple of weeks,” he said. “As we’ve seen in northeast Ohio, we’ve seen those cases starting to come down. We’ve started to see some hospitalization numbers come down in northeast Ohio. We expect that we’re a few weeks behind them, so it’s going to be a little while before we get past this surge.”

Currently, the Ohio Department of Health reports 60.89% of Franklin County is fully vaccinated.

“Certainly, vaccination is the number one thing we can all do,” Mazzola said. “We have got to get more of our residents vaccinated here in our community.”