Hamilton Co. elevated to highest spread, exposure level on state’s COVID-19 alert map

Gov. DeWine updates Ohio on COVID-19 vaccine rollout

COLUMBUS, Ohio (FOX19) - Hamilton County was elevated to the highest level on Ohio’s COVID-19 Advisory System map on Thursday.

The purple level indicates severe exposure and spread of COVID-19.

“This week, we are noting some small changes in Ohio Advisory System alert map,” Gov. Mike DeWine announced. “We’re not necessarily seeing a dramatic surge after Christmas and the New Year, but there is a bit of an upswing in our cases. Reflecting this, Hamilton County is moving to purple this week.”

Ohio’s advisory system utilizes seven data indicators to identify the COVID-19 risk level for each county. The counties are then assigned to one of four color-coded levels based upon their risk level.

The state recommends people who live in purple counties only leave home for “supplies and services.” There are no mandates that come with the designation.

Clermont County also moved to the “purple watch list,” DeWine said Thursday.

Hamilton County reported 769 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents from Dec. 30, 2020, through Jan. 12, 2021.

On Wednesday, Hamilton County Commissioner Denise Driehaus said the county is not receiving enough doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to finish Phase 1A of the state’s vaccine rollout.

Phase 1A includes health care workers and personnel, as well as residents and staff at nursing homes.

Health Commissioner Greg Kesterman said the county health department receives 500 doses a week and said it’s a “very limited supply.”

Like all of Ohio, Hamilton County will begin the next phase of the vaccine rollout where those over 80 can register to vaccinate.

The governor says there are about 420,000 people in Ohio who are 80 years old and older. Since Ohio will only get around 100,000 doses of the vaccine in the next rollout, DeWine said not everyone in the age group will be able to get vaccinated.

When Phase 1B begins, the current plan is to subtract five years each week from the previous eligible age group.

  • Jan. 25 - Ohioans 75 and older
  • Feb. 1 - Ohioans 70 and older
  • Feb. 8 - Ohioans 65 and older

During the week of Feb. 1, Gov. DeWine says school personnel will begin to receive the vaccine, but only if the district commits to returning to in-person or hybrid learning by March 1.

“When a new age range opens, that does not mean vaccinations will be complete for the previous age range,” said Gov. DeWine. “Vaccinating Ohioans in Phase 1B will take a number of weeks given the limited doses available.”

On Thursday, the Ohio Department of Health reported 7,654 new cases and 109 more deaths from COVID-19.

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