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Pickaway County health director hopes Trump rally is not a 'super spreader' event

People who are sick or have underlying health problems are not encouraged to attend.

CIRCLEVILLE, Ohio — Pickaway County is at a Level 2 Health Advisory meaning increased exposure and spread of the coronavirus.

It’s also seeing its highest cases and hospitalizations since it began tracking COVID-19 more than seven months ago.

“We're seeing the highest hospitalizations that we have seen throughout the pandemic over the last couple of weeks. That's why we are very concerned which is why we are trying to relay those important safety messages every chance we get,” said Adam Negley, MPH Pickaway County Health Commissioner.

Political rallies like the one on Saturday make it almost impossible for people to practice social distancing. The worry is could this event become a super spreader?

“We will be tracking the cases just like any other event in Pickaway County. We hope that people will social distance as much as possible,” Negley said.

For Rick Frazier, this Trump rally will be his 32nd. He says he’s traveled across the country to listen to the president speak.

“Anyone who has been to one of these things, you know how funny Donald Trump is. He's really hilarious,” Frazier said.

The cancer survivor says he has no concerns about his health even among hundreds of people.

“We're going through a medical tent up here. They will screen you, you'll have your temperature taken, they'll give you hand sanitizer and they'll hand you a mask. They ask that you wear it it's not recommended,” Frazier said.

Kenneth Cornett is also planning to attend despite being high risk.

“I’m a disabled veteran I have five immune problems. I also have diabetes. When we are inside we wear a mask but I feel pretty safe. This is going to be outside, so I feel safe with all the people,” Cornett said.

Pickaway County is at Level 2 which means increased exposure and high spread. As of Oct. 23, the data from the Ohio Department of Health shows the county has 169 cases per 100,000 people which exceeds the CDC guidelines. The county is averaging 99 cases over the past two weeks.

You can see more data for the county, click here.