“It’s not if, but when.” That’s the message from the Director of the Ohio Department of Health when it comes to the surge in coronavirus cases. Dr. Amy Acton revealed that projection at the daily briefing on the virus held by Governor Mike DeWine.
“We will surge,” she said. “At our peak surge, we may be as high as 6,000 to 8,000 cases a day.”
Acton and DeWine anticipate that the peak may be around May 1.
DeWine also said Ohio will need to increase the capacity of hospitals. The governor noted that Maryland intends to double its capacity and that Ohio may have to follow suit.
“We do not know exactly at this point what the capacity will have to be, but we know that we know it’s going to have to be a lot, lot bigger,” DeWine said.
Acton said continuing the practice of “social distancing” will push the surge further down the timeline and allow hospitals more time to prepare for an increase in patients. She said health systems in the state are trying to build in redundancy in anticipation that health care workers will be affected. It’s happening already in Lucas County where two employees of the health department there tested positive for coronavirus.
DeWine also said there is a strong possibility that Ohio schools may not reopen to students for the remainder of the school year.
Acton said by the time this crisis is done, 40-to-70 percent of Ohioans may end up contracting the coronavirus. Social distancing will help, but she warned that we could even be more vigilant in keeping apart from one another.
“We can be even more strict than we are now,” she said. “We shouldn’t be playing basketball on the court.”
“We should be down to our smallest groups by now,” she said.