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Second Christmas with high COVID numbers

Ohio reported more than 14,000 new cases on Christmas Eve.

CLEVELAND — *Editor's Note: This story has been updated to add more context as more COVID statistics become available from the state. 

The buzzword last Christmas? "Vaccine."

It was less than two weeks after the first health care worker had gotten hers at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New York, and we were waiting on a timeline to learn when every day Americans could do the same.

This year, the buzzword is "omicron."

More than 60% of Americans have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and some have had a booster, but this variant is so infectious some doctors are anticipating that even those who take precautions are likely to get it.

"Omicron is so contagious," Dr. Amy Edwards from University Hospitals said. "I imagine we have more contagious variants in our future, that everyone is going to get COVID."

Consider the numbers:

  • According to the Ohio Department of Health COVID dashboard, more than 3,200 Ohioans had an onset date for COVID on Christmas of 2020. 6,254 are reported for Christmas Eve of 2021.
  •  This Christmas Eve, there were more than 14,000 new cases reported. Christmas Eve of 2020, more than 8,000 cases were reported.
  • Last year, there were 81 new hospitalizations.
  •  This year, 214 new hospitalizations were reported on December 24, with health experts telling us the vast majority of those patients are unvaccinated.
  • Since last Christmas, Ohio has seen more than 1.2 million cases, 52,000 hospitalizations, and 16,000 deaths.

COVID-19 IN OHIO: The latest numbers from around the state

On the other side, 1,033,310 are believed to have recovered from COVID between Christmas of 2020 and Christmas Eve 2021, according to the Ohio Department of health. We have also seen a major expansion in at home testing available, causing many to check before they go see family for the holidays.

After a whole other year of living with this virus, people are deciding what they need to do to spend time with family.

"I think this year for my side of the family, it was better," one Clevelander told 3News.

RELATED: Another COVID Christmas brings anxiety, but also optimism

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