ODH to transition to weekly COVID-19 data reporting; schools no longer have to report cases

COLUMBUS — The Ohio Department of Health announced it will shift from daily COVID-19 data reporting to weekly data reporting, while also no longer requiring school districts to report cases in most situations.

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“As cases and hospitalizations dramatically decline, we are refining our public reporting processes to be more relevant for this new phase of the pandemic,” said Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, Director of the Department of Health, “Ohio is one of only a handful of states that is still reporting COVID-19 data daily. Even with this change, the state team will continue to monitor the trajectory of COVID-19 closely.”

The CDC will begin shifting away from the daily case count to determine the level of risk to using severity of disease in communities.

Here is the rate of spread and severity of illness:

  • 61 counties are low risk
  • 17 counties are medium risk
  • 10 counties are high risk

The Ohio Department of Health recommends that high risk counties should still mask indoors regardless of vaccination status.

New and cumulative COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and vaccinations will be updated weekly instead of daily on Thursdays starting Mar. 17, ODH said.

Newly reported deaths will be reported on Thursdays and will continue to be assigned to the appropriate date of death.

Data involving long-term care facilities, including the reports from partner agencies like, Developmental Disabilities, Veteran’s Homes, Youth Services, Mental Health and Addiction Services and Rehabilitation and Corrections, will be published weekly on Thursdays.

Schools that are K-12 will not be required to report positive COVID-19 cases, unless that school tests the student and the test comes back positive.

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ODH still has many systems including data analysis and surveillance that will help us monitor COVID-19 activity and identify pockets of higher spread, so the state can work with local communities to slow the spread of the virus, Vanderhoff said.

The state reported for the first time since August that the statewide average case number per 100,000 residents has dropped below 100 Thursday. Ohio reported an average of 78.2 cases per 100,000 people as of Mar. 9.

Nearly two-thirds of Ohio’s 88 counties are below 100 cases per 100,000 people, according to the release.