CLARK COUNTY, Ohio (WDTN) – Thursday, the Ohio Department of Health announced that Clark County was joining 8 other counties in the Alert Level 3 designation.
Charles Patterson, Health Commissioner for Clark County says the original decrease in cases was thanks to an increase in mask wearing, but an outbreak at long term care facilities has increased the number of cases and changed their designation.
“We were steady at about 65 cases a week, but we’ve seen a little jump. We have about four long term care [facilities] that have been affected and we have one major outbreak…over the last 2 weeks,” explained Patterson.
Patterson says these outbreaks are affecting elderly and frail individuals in the county. The county now has 17 confirmed deaths, which has been deeply affecting Clark County families.
“Especially at this time when they can’t even visit their loved ones in the nursing home. This is a real tragic result in Clark County right now. That’s why we fight so desperately to keep [COVID-19] out of the long term care facilities,” said Patterson.
Patterson says it’s important to remain cautious and work as a county to decrease cases as children prepare to return to school.
“With kids going back to school, there is a possibility of additional cases and spread. Due to that, we’re going to be watching very carefully,” he said. “The health district supports schools going back in person when needed because we know there’s other social and emotional learning going on in schools that we know is important.”