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Northeast Ohio health officials plead with public to get COVID-19 vaccine as cases, hospitalizations reach record-highs

"If you look at the numbers now, we are at historic highs for the numbers."

CLEVELAND — At MetroHealth, ambulance pulls in after ambulance. Those who thought COVID-19 couldn't get any worse were wrong.

“We are in a very difficult time right now," said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine during a Wednesday press conference. 

DeWine isn't the only leader sounding the alarm. Terry Allan with the Cuyahoga County Board of Health says, "if you look at the numbers now, we are at historic highs for the numbers."

Dr. Robert Wyllie, CEO from the Cleveland Clinic, set out the numbers plainly.

“Cuyahoga County, we have one the highest in the state and in the country in terms of number of cases per day," Dr.Wyllie said. 

The hits of COVID keep on coming. COVID-19 cases continue to rise exponentially. At many local hospitals, elective surgeries are postponed. The Cleveland Clinic now has more than 2,700 employees out sick due to the virus.

“Eighty percent of the people in the hospital are not vaccinated and over 90 percent in the ICU are not vaccinated," says Dr. Wyllie. 

55 percent of Ohioans are vaccinated and 38 percent are boosted. That means 45 percent in the Buckeye State are unvaccinated, doctors say that they are the ones that are most at risk.

Dr. Joseph Khabbaza with Cleveland Clinic says “to this consistency and volume, I have never seen it like this." 

The state is now at 17 times the CDC threshold of high transmission. Across the area, ER rooms are described as gruesome, tiresome, and deadly. This is why medical professionals are pleading with the public to get the vaccine. 

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