DeWine mobilizes National Guard to relieve hospital staffing strain

Staff Report

Here are the latest details on how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting the area:

• Ohio Governor Mike DeWine mobilized 1,050 members of the Ohio National Guard to help relieve the hospital staffing strain caused by the rising number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

Of the total mobilized guard members, approximately 150 are highly-trained medical professionals and will deploy to help meet critical needs at hospitals and testing locations. The remaining 900 guard members will help with patient transport, housekeeping, and food services. Guard members were brought on duty beginning Monday.

The Ohio Department of Health is also working with an Ohio health care staffing company to help meet hospital staffing needs. This agreement will allow for Ohio hospitals to bring in qualified nurses and other providers from out-of-state to fill needed positions to help ease some of the current added pressure on hospitals and staff.

More than 4,700 people were hospitalized in Ohio fighting COVID-19 as of Friday. That equates to one in every 5 hospital patients. This is the highest number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 this year, and the number of hospitalized patients is rapidly approaching an all-time high.

In Northern Ohio (Ohio Hospital Zone 1) most hospitals have suspended elective surgeries. In Central and Southeast Ohio (Ohio Hospital Zone 2), the same thing is beginning to happen. In Southwest Ohio, (Ohio Hospital Zone 3), hospital leaders are preparing to take similar action.

• Fulton County had 199 new COVID cases reported last week, according to the Fulton County Heath Department. That is down from 246 the week prior.

The county has a case rate of 854.6 per 100,000. That is a quite a bit lower than the prior week and also means Fulton County is no longer in the top 10 for county’s in Ohio. It is now 26th.

Overall, the state’s case rate is 783.2.

As of Friday, there were 207 active cases in Fulton County, which is up from 267 the previous Friday.

The week also saw 8 new deaths and 6 new hospitalizations.

• Fulton County has had 7,665 overall cases as of Sunday, according to the Ohio Department of Health. There have been 126 deaths reported in the county.

In Lucas County, there have been 66,731 total cases with 1,058 deaths, according to the health department.

• The Archbold and Wauseon zip codes had the highest COVID case rates in Fulton County over the last two weeks.

The Wauseon zip code had a case rate of 747.3 per 100,000 and 99 cases. Archbold’s zip code had a case rate of 741.4 and 49 cases over the last two weeks.

Fayette had 19 cases and a rate of 692.9.

The Delta zip code’s case rate was 629.2 over the last two weeks, with 54 cases reported. The Swanton zip code had a case rate of 679.2 and 86 cases over the last two weeks.

Over the two weeks there were 9 cases in Lyons, and 6 in Metamora.

• In Fulton County, over half of residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. As of Sunday, 21,272 people, or 50.5% of residents, have at least started the vaccine.

The 70-74 age group has the highest percentage of people vaccinated at 91.25%. Also, 87.7% of those 75-79 years old have been vaccinated as have 86.78% of Fulton County residents 80 years or older.

The lowest numbers are among younger county residents. About 40.8% of people in their 20s and 42.78% of people in their 30s are vaccinated.

The 19 and under age group is lower, but the majority are either not eligible for the vaccine or just recently became eligible. In that group 18.14% have received a COVID vaccination.

In Lucas County, 57.78% of residents have been vaccinated. That number is 53.86% in Henry County and 44.79% in Williams.

Delaware County has the highest rate in the state at 74.31%.

• COVID-19 vaccine is available Mondays at the Fulton County Health Department. Starting Jan. 3, the hours will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. with the last two hours for kids 5-11 years old.

Appointments are preferred.

It is also available at the Rite Aid locations in Archbold, Swanton, and Wauseon, the Swanton Kroger, and Wauseon Walmart.

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Staff Report