Health experts break down Gov. DeWine’s Top 20, Darke County takes top spot

Local News

MIAMI COUNTY, (WDTN) — Miami County has been slowly creeping up the list of top 20 counties with high incidence of the coronavirus, now sitting in fourth. Health officials suspect people could be suffering from COVID-fatigue and could be disregarding guidelines in their private lives.

Miami County Public Health says they’re seeing the average number of daily cases climb over the last few weeks.

“We went from averaging 10-to-20 cases per day to over 100 in just a few weeks,” said MCPH Health Educator Vicky Knisley-Henry. “The only way we’re going to curb is for everyone in the community to do what they need to do, it’s going to take all of us to turn it around,”

Mercer County has sat in the top position for several weeks but has now been taken off the top 20 completely, which took the community by a surprise.

“We are very happy to have disappeared from the Top 20 list, even a little bit surprised to see that,” said Jason Menchhofer, Mercer County’s Health District Administrator

Mercer County health experts accredit their new status to residents taking CDC guidelines seriously. Additionally, a new virtual group has formed called “Mercer County Cares,” and even though it’s fairly new officials believe it could be having an impact on the current status.

“We still have new cases coming in but we’re increasing more slowly than what we were,” said Menchhofer. “If you look at our November total, over 1,100 cases, pushing up to 40 cases per day and we had days where we had over 100 come in.”

Though Darke County is at the top of the state’s list Thursday, just two weeks ago it was nowhere the top 20. Due to it being a predominantly rural county, some Miami Valley health leaders suspect the data could be misleading due to a variety of variables.

“Particularly if you’re controlling an outbreak in a congregate area, or if you’ve taken away things like schools where the kids aren’t there [sic] so now you’ve reduced the risk of person to person transmission. Which could turn the tide in some of those statistics that we track,” said Dr. Roberto Colon, associate chief medical officer at Miami Valley Hospital.

If you are suffering from COVID-fatigue or any mental health concerns, health department officials encourage you to reach out to your own community’s department for assistance.

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