5 things to know about the coronavirus today: New health director amid soaring cases

It is Friday, Nov. 6, 2020, and these are five things to know about the coronavirus pandemic today.

DeWine announces a new health director and team members

In a Thursday news conference, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced new members of the Ohio Department of Health, including a new ODH director, Stephanie McCloud. The role was previously held by Dr. Amy Acton and then by Lance Himes, who served as interim director after Acton’s resignation. Himes will now be the ODH senior deputy. DeWine also announced Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff will serve as ODH chief medical officer, and Kathleen Madden will serve as ODH chief of staff.

ExploreDeWine announces new health director, team members as state battles coronavirus

Ohio nears 5,000 reported cases in a day

For the third time this week, Ohio has broken its daily case record with a reported 4,961 cases on Thursday. It is also the third straight day with more than 4,000 cases, with a total of 13,261 cases reported since Tuesday. Gov. DeWine said that Ohio’s rates have never gone up this fast, and said that the state’s increase in cases is not due to increased testing, pointing out that since Sept. 24 total tests rose 44% while cases rose by 280%.

ExploreCoronavirus: 4,961 cases reported as Ohio breaks daily record for third time in a week

Cases also on the rise in Ohio schools

The Ohio Department of Health has reported that coronavirus cases in the state’s K-12 schools rose significantly last week, following the pattern of rising cases in the community as a whole. ODH data showed schools reported 1,776 new cases among students and staff in the week of Oct. 26 to Nov. 1. The previous week had 1,281 cases reported.

ExploreSchool-reported COVID cases soar; Public Health still recommends online school

Local health officials ask public to be cautious as cases rise

Rising numbers of coronavirus patients going to local hospitals to be treated had health officials on Thursday urging the public to take better precautions. More specifically, Sarah Hackenbracht, CEO of the Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association, said that she didn’t want to alarm people since hospitals are still managing to care for and treat all patients, but called the trend of coronavirus cases “disturbing.”

ExploreOfficials plead for caution as COVID cases soar, hospital patients rise

Rising coronavirus cases is slowing contact tracing

As coronavirus cases shoot upward, public health workers who trace the path of the virus and contact sick people and their close contacts are having a harder time keeping pace. Public Health officials said that cases are accumulating faster than tracers can get through, leading to delays reaching sick people and their contacts.

ExploreRising coronavirus cases slow contact tracing

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