Local COVID numbers continue decline


COVID-19 cases in Highland County have continued their repeated decrease, according to the New York Times COVID Tracker. The tracker said Tuesday that the county was seeing 2.1 new cases per day, which is about 5.0 cases per 100,000 in population.

The last time The Times-Gazette reported on COVID-19 data, which was on March 21, The New York Times COVID Tracker said the county was seeing 2.3 new cases per day, about 5.3 cases per 100,000 in population.

The tracker gave some of the latest trends for the county. It said that the community level of COVID-19 in the county is “low” based on cases and hospitalizations, according to the most recent Center for Disease Control (CDC) update on March 23.

It also said the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients has fallen in the county, with the number of deaths staying at “about the same level.”

The tracker said the test positivity rate in Highland County is “high.”

“Higher test positivity rates are a sign that many infections are not reported — even if they are tested for at home,” the tracker said. “This results in a more severe under count of cases. The number of hospitalized patients with Covid is a more reliable measure because testing is more consistent in hospitals.”

The update also said an average of two cases were reported each day in the county, which was a 40 percent decrease compared to the average two weeks ago. It also said that since the beginning of the pandemic, the county has seen a total of 13,536 reported cases.

Concerning the data from The New York Times, the organization announced that it planned to end its COVID-19 data-gathering “operation.” The announcement said the site would still publish its COVID-19 tracking pages, but now with new information from the federal government and not its own data statistics.

“This change was spurred by the declining availability of virus data from state and local health officials,” The New York Times stated in one of those updates. “Since few states report more than once a week (and some no longer report data to the public at all), the weekly data reports from the CDC have become the most reliable source of information on the virus’s spread. The new tracker pages will be updated once weekly and will highlight hospitalizations, deaths and the CDC’s county-level analysis of virus conditions, among other data.”

In other news, Highland County’s COVID-19 case rate stood at 64.9 cases per 100,000 in population over the previous two weeks, according to the Ohio Department of Health Coronavirus Dashboard, which was last updated Thursday. The case rate was below the state average of 117.9 cases per 100,000 in population over the same period, and ranks the county 79th among the state’s 88 counties in terms of the highest case rates.

In terms of vaccinations, Highland County is currently at 41.18 percent of the county’s residents that have started their vaccines, according to the ODH COVID-19 Vaccination Dashboard, which was last updated on Thursday. The state average for “vaccine started” is 64.82 percent.

In terms of completed vaccines, the state average is 60.10 percent, while the Highland County average is 38.16 percent.

The dashboard also said there have been 8,197 “first booster” doses and 3,181 “second booster” doses administered in the county on or after Aug. 12, to people that were already fully vaccinated.

It also said 3,117 people from Highland County have received the “updated bivalent booster.”

Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.

No posts to display