Ohio Clears Testing Backlog, Creating 1-Day Spike to 25K New Cases

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — The Ohio Department of Health Tuesday reported 25,271 new cases of COVID-19, a one-day spike caused by the clearing of the state’s backlog of antigen test results, bringing the total to 510,018.

The backlog, the health department announced Tuesday, was roughly 13,000 tests. The onset date for the tests has been backfiled and recorded properly.

“After understanding more about antigen tests, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), changed their case definition in August allowing antigen tests to be included in case counts without additional verification,” said ODH chief medical officer Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff.  “ODH is now aligned with CDC’s current definition and we will begin reflecting those tests immediately in our daily reported case counts moving forward.”

The state also reported 81 new deaths, bringing the cumulative count to 7,103, and 657 new hospitalizations for COVID-19, 67 of which were intensive care admissions.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health reported 10,170 new cases Tuesday, bringing the commonwealth’s total to 436,614.

In Mahoning County, the ODH reports 10,636 cases, up 782 from Monday, with 734 hospitalizations, up six, and 307 deaths. The county has had 2,232 cases over the past two weeks, according to Ohio’s ZIP code case map. The 44512 ZIP code, Boardman, leads with 352; followed by 44514, Poland, with 290; and 44515, Austintown, with 283.

The ODH reports 7,847 cases in Trumbull County, up 482 new cases from Monday, with 626 hospitalizations, up 22, and 166 deaths, up one. There have been 1,521 cases in the past two weeks, led by the 44483 ZIP code, Warren/Champion Heights, with 286; 44484, primarily Warren/Niles, with 167 cases; and 44446, Niles/Girard, with 159.

In Columbiana County, the ODH reports 4,650 positive cases, 170 new cases from Monday, along with 338 hospitalizations, three more than reported Monday, and 107 deaths, up three from yesterday. There have been 785 new cases over the past two weeks, according to the state ZIP code map, led by 43920 – Calcutta – with 223 cases and 44460 – Salem – with 156.

Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties are rated Red in the state’s color-coded Public Health Advisory System, indicating very high exposure and spread. All 88 counties in the state are at least Orange level, indicating increased exposure and spread.

Currently, Montgomery, Richland, Lorain, Medina, Summit, Portage, Stark and Lake counties are ranked Purple – the highest threat level – indicating severe exposure and spread and recommending that residents leave their homes only for supplies and services.

Of the total cases reported by Ohio Department of Health, 470,271 are confirmed. ODH reported 39,297 probable cases based on the CDC’s expanded case definition. Of the 7,103 total deaths, 6,601 are confirmed and another 502 are probable under the CDC expanded diagnosis definition. The 21-day reported case average is 9,408.

The ODH also reports cumulative 30,226 hospitalizations, of which 5,010 are intensive care admissions, up 67 since Monday. The state reports a presumed 341,008 Ohioans have recovered after testing positive, up 13,930 since Sunday. Presumed recovered is defined as cases with a symptom onset date of greater than 21 days prior who are not deceased, according to the ODH website.

As of Monday, Ohio had conducted 6,554,107 tests. CLICK HERE for a map of testing locations in the state.

In Pennsylvania, 403,298 of the total cases in the commonwealth are confirmed, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and 33,316 are probable. There are 5,516 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in the commonwealth, of whom 1,116 are in the ICU and 659 on a ventilator.

Pennsylvania also reports 11,542 total deaths, up 169 from Monday.

Of all tests conducted in Pennsylvania, 2,959,724 were reported negative, the department reported Monday. With positive cases, 57% have recovered. If a case has not been reported as a death and it is more than 30 days past the date of their first positive test or onset of symptoms, then the person is considered recovered, according to the health department’s website.

On Tuesday, the health department reported Mercer County has 3,800 cases, or 107 new cases since Monday, and 61 deaths – three new deaths – with 19,472 negative tests. Lawrence County has 2,772 total cases, up 69 from Monday, and 81 deaths – three deaths since Monday – as well as 12,447 negative tests.

The figures are updated daily by the Ohio Department of Health at 2 p.m. and Pennsylvania Department of Health at noon.

For more stories on the coronavirus and its impact on businesses, both locally and nationally, go to our coronavirus news page here.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.