CLEVELAND — For the fifth straight week, Cuyahoga County remains at a high community level for COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The CDC reports that Cuyahoga County has a COVID case rate of 207.44 per 100,000 residents, which is down slightly from last week. The county also posted a rate of 14.9 new COVID-related hospital admissions per capita over the past seven days.
Lorain County remains at the high or "orange" level for this week after reporting a COVID-19 case rate of 223.02 and a hospitalization threshold of 20.
The following other Northeast Ohio counties are ranked at the orange level by the CDC:
- Ashland - 224.37 cases per 100K, 15.5 new hospitalizations
- Ashtabula - 219.04 cases per 100K, 14.9 new hospitalizations
- Erie - 274.69 cases per 100K, 20 new hospitalizations
- Huron - 267.64 cases per 100K, 20 new hospitalizations
- Mahoning - 189.78 cases per 100K, 20.7 new hospitalizations
- Richland - 261.65 cases per 100K, 15.5 new hospitalizations
- Trumbull - 203.06 cases per 100K, 20.7 new hospitalizations
- Tuscarawas - 204.38 cases per 100K, 12.2 new hospitalizations
- Wayne - 210.87 cases per 100K, 12.2 new hospitalizations
The CDC is advising that residents of the counties in the high category wear masks while in indoor public spaces, regardless of COVID vaccination status. In addition, those with compromised immune systems are warned to think twice about taking part in non-essential activities due to an increased risk of getting severely ill.
This week's data shows that all but one of the counties listed above have seen at least 200 new COVID-19 infections per 100,000 residents over the previous seven days, meaning the hospitalization threshold to get into this "orange" zone is lower. (20.0 is needed when the case figure is below 200, which is why Mahoning County ended up in the high category).
All counties in the Buckeye State are at either the "yellow" level for medium, or "orange" level for high. Carroll, Lake, Portage, Geauga, Holmes, Medina, Summit, and Stark counties are all medium, which indicates masks aren't recommended for all people but those who are immunocompromised should proceed with more caution.
Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine did not enact any new mask or health mandates the last time counties went "orange" late in the spring (partly due to a controversial new law limiting his pandemic powers), and is unlikely to do so this time. However, Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish did order all employees and visitors to wear face coverings inside government buildings, and private businesses and establishments across the state are still largely free to enact their own policies.
The Ohio Department of Health reported over 23,000 new cases of COVID-19 over the past seven days on Thursday. It marked the fourth straight week that the number of new cases in the state have declined.