Agencies provide COVID-19 updates

MIAMI COUNTY — Miami County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Joel Smith provided the Miami County Commissioners with his weekly COVID-19 update on Thursday, saying Miami County continues to be an orange Risk Level 2 the state of Ohio Public Health Advisory System.

According to Miami County Public Health (MCPH), this is due to Miami County meeting the criteria for three of the seven alert indicators:

• 50-plus cases out of 100,000 population within last two weeks

• More than 50 percent of new cases are from non-congregate care living

• A sustained increase in outpatient visits for COVID-19 symptoms over the past five days

“This risk level indicates increased exposure and spread of COVID-19,” MCPH officials said in a press release on Friday. “It is advised that community members exercise a high degree of caution and follow all current health orders. Limit events over 10 people and non-essential activities as much as possible.”

On Thursday, Smith explained the county met the criteria for the outpatient visits between Aug. 2-7 where the average cases per day rose from 9.4 to 11.29.

“The other two (indicators) have been consistent,” Smith said. He went on to say the state was not seeing much change, adding, “No counties are going into the level 4.”

“We look to be where we’re at and not significantly worse,” Smith said.

For more information on the Public Health Advisory System, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov.

Since Aug 7, there have been 155 new COVID-19 cases, 20 new hospitalizations and two new deaths reported, according to MCPH. This brings the total number of COVID-19 cases in Miami County to 974 — with 792 confirmed cases and 182 probable cases — along with 102 hospitalizations, and 40 deaths, with 756 presumed recovered.

MCPH is also tracking positive cases in each zip code. The zip code for Troy, 45373, shows the highest number of cases in the county as it is exceeding 250 cases, according to MCPH data. Piqua is exceeding 150 cases, and Tipp City is under 150 cases.

Since Smith’s last presentation to the commissioners, the number of new cases that were detected increased by 75. That was the lowest weekly increase in four weeks, he said. Hospitalizations increased by 10 since his last update, and deaths increased by one. Smith said there are an estimated 194 cases that are active in the county, according to the Ohio EMA.

In regard to hospital capacity, the following are capacities for Miami County hospitals, which includes uses beyond COVID-19 incidents:

• 31 percent usage of airborne isolation units, or four out of 10 in use

• 86 percent usage of critical care beds, or 12 out of 14 in use

• 58 percent usage of surgical beds, or 65 out of 113 in use

• 2 percent usage of ventilators, or 1 out of 45 in use

In regard to deaths, Smith went over the breakdown of the ages of the 40 deaths reported in the county linked to COVID-19. He said 28 were 80-plus years old, seven were between the ages of 70-79, four were between the ages of 60-69, and one was in the 50-59 age range.

On Friday, MCPH officials encouraged the public to continue the use of face masks and social distancing with schools reopening soon.

“Schools are beginning to reopen, and to help keep students and staff safe, MCPH encourages the community to practice safe social distancing and wear a face covering when you are out in public. If you have symptoms, or if you live with someone with symptoms, stay home. Please do not attend school, social gatherings or events. These are the only steps we can take to slow the spread,” health officials said.