The coronavirus pandemic in Ohio entered a new phase this week as dosages of vaccine began arriving in the state. Medical personnel and frontline workers are among the first to get the vaccine.
Today, vaccines will begin for the state's nursing home residents. Those residents have been among the hardest hit by the pandemic.
Technical glitches prevented an accurate count of new cases on Wednesday and led to a higher case count yesterday. Averaged together, the numbers puts the two-day count at 8,411 each day.
The governor credits his ongoing overnight curfew and increased mask enforcement as helping to drive case numbers down. But, he notes every single county in Ohio has an extremely high incidence rate of spread of the virus.
2020 will go down in history books as a turbulent year that tested us on many fronts. The trajectory of the year set up pretty early when in January a Washington State man became the first to be diagnosed with the novel coronavirus-which caused a potentially severe and deadly disease known as COVID-19. As we end 2020, there are now more than 74-million cases worldwide. More than 17-million cases are in the United States.
That was January-and it still seemed far away until March 9 when Ohio confirmed its first cases involving 3 people in Cuyahoga County. Two days later the coronavirus received pandemic status from the World Health Organization.
That was how it started. Since those early days the understanding of the virus and the response and also backlash to the response have all evolved.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and then-Director of the Ohio Department of Health Amy Acton wasted little time in responding to the looming public health threat. So began daily briefings on the virus with plenty of charts and phrases such as "flattening the curve". DeWine and Acton implemented the first "stay at home" order on March 22. Mass gatherings and most "non-essential" businesses had already been closed.
One of the biggest shifts in our understanding of the coronavirus has to do with the effectiveness of masks. Initially masks were not recommended, but the Centers for Disease Control reversed course on that in April.
Glenn Forbes, producer/host, Ideastream
Karen Kasler, Statehouse News Bureau chief, Ohio Public Radio/TV
Marlene Harris-Taylor, Managing Producer for Health, Ideastream
Carrie Wise, Managing Producer for Arts and Culture, Ideastream
Annie Wu, news director, Ideastream