Even as Ohio's number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases continues to grow, the state has maintained the necessary hospital capacity to accommodate its patients.
Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton, however, knows the state will have to move fast in order for that to remain the case moving forward.
"We have empty beds now," Acton said. "But it is the calm before the storm."
With coronavirus cases expected to increase drastically in the coming weeks, Acton said Ohio will need to at least double its current hotel capacity. Based on its current modeling, Acton said that Ohio is projected to peak with 10,000 new daily cases around mid-late April.
As a result, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has divided the state into eight regions and asked each to come up with a plan for increasing its capacity. Additionally, the state is looking at converting empty dorm and hotel rooms, as well as buildings such as Cleveland's I-X Center, in order to help increase its hotel capacity.
As of Tuesday, Ohio has had 2,199 confirmed coronavirus cases, 585 of which have resulted in hospitalization, 198 ICU admissions and 55 deaths. Dating back to the discovery of the state's first positive coronavirus case on March 9, DeWine has taken a number of measures to encourage social distancing, including issuing a stay-at-home order across the state set to last through at least April 6.
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