DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Statewide COVID-19 hospitalizations are on a downward trend, but Miami Valley health officials said our region hasn’t reached a peak in hospitalizations yet.
Doctors in the Miami Valley said what is happening in other parts of the state is encouraging, however, there’s still some time to go before the region’s COVID-19 hospitalizations start following the downward trend.
“We’ve seen a little bit of a yo-yoing of the admissions almost from a day-to-day basis over the last week. Some days we’re going up, a few days we’re decreasing,” Miami Valley Hospital chief medical officer Dr. Roberto Colon said.
Statewide hospitalizations have been on a steady decline for over a week, dropping 9% over the last seven days, according to the Ohio Hospital Association.
In the Miami Valley, the highest number of COVID-19 hospitalizations ever recorded was just a few days ago, with 636 hospitalizations on January 13.
As of Tuesday, there were 596 COVID-19 patients in the hospital and a 4% drop in hospitalizations over seven days.
Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association President and CEO Sarah Hackenbracht said that small dip is not enough to say the region is past its hospitalization peak.
“That is part of what concerns us, that we may be in a period where we may have to hold steady on this high number of hospitalizations until we can start to see a decrease, and that is very challenging to our hospital and health care workers,” Hackenbracht said.
Kettering Health patient safety officer Dr. Jeffrey Weinstein said seeing decreasing hospitalizations in other parts of the state is promising, but it could still be 10 to 14 days before a decline is noticeable here.
“Once we start seeing that decline, it’s still going to take a few weeks before we get down to levels where we’re not quite as burdened with COVID in the hospitals,” Weinstein said.
Weinstein said even as numbers drop, they are still record high and hospitals continue to feel the strain on their workers and resources.
“It’s going to be a while before we get down to better levels and where we’re not having staffing shortages and filled intensive care units, but any decrease will be good,” Weinstein said.
Colon said in order for hospitalizations to decrease, everyone needs to wear a mask, avoid gatherings, get tested if sick, and get vaccinated.
“This is not the time to celebrate and start removing some of those more strict measures that we’ve put in place,” Colon said. “If anything, it is evidence that those things are working, and we need to keep them going.”