More than 100,000 people are believed to be infected with the coronavirus, according statements by officials with the Ohio Department of Health during a Thursday afternoon news conference.
That number accounts for around 1% of Ohio’s population.
"We know now, just the fact of community spread says that at least 1%, at the very least 1% of our population is carrying this virus in Ohio today," said Dr. Amy Acton, Director of ODH. "We have 11.7 million people."
According to the Governor Mike DeWine’s Office and the ODH, cases are expected to double every six days.
"Whenever you know of 2 people that have it due to community spread, then you can assume that 1% of your population has it," said ODH Press Secretary Melanie Amato, citing a 2017 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report from the CDC.
Currently, Ohio has five confirmed cases of the virus. Three of the cases are in Cuyahoga County, one is in Stark County and the newest case—announced Wednesday—is a 55-year-old man in Trumbull County.
The man is the second known case who contracted the disease via community spread.
There are 52 people under investigation for COVID-19, meaning they have exhibited symptoms and are awaiting test results.
"This is certainly an unprecedented time. It is this one in 50 years pandemic that we have been planning for that we talk a lot about in my over 30 years in public health," Acton said. "We have never seen a situation exactly like this."
ODH is urging people to stay at home. Slowing down the spread of the disease over the next few days is “crucial,” Acton said.
This article was written by Drew Scofield for WEWS .