COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The Ohio Department of Health has released the latest number of COVID-19 cases in the state.
As of April 28, a total of 1,068,985 (+1,723) cases have been reported since the pandemic began, leading to 56,145 (+153) hospitalizations and 7,760 (+11) ICU admissions. A total of 4,622,202 Ohioans — 39.54% of the state’s population — have started the vaccination process. That’s an increase of 20,827 in the last 24 hours.
The Department of Health reported 66 deaths Tuesday, bringing the state total to 19,188. The state is updating the total number of deaths only after death certificates have been processed, usually twice a week.
Speaking from a mass vaccination clinic at Cleveland State University, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced a change to the state’s quarantine guidelines, saying that those who are fully vaccinated will not have to quarantine if exposed to a person who has COVID-19. A person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after they receive their final dose.
In reviewing the state’s COVID-19 data, DeWine said he is hopeful that a recent increase in cases has plateaued and is beginning to decline.
Shortly before DeWine spoke, U.S. health officials announced that fully vaccinated Americans don’t need to wear masks outdoors anymore unless they are in a big crowd of strangers, and that those who are unvaccinated can go without a face covering outside in some cases, too.
The state’s rate of cases per 100,000 residents over two weeks was reported last Thursday at 185.8. DeWine had set a benchmark of 50 for lifting the pandemic health orders in the state. He has signaled that a replacement benchmark may be in the works.
Vaccination is open to those 16 and older.