A quarter of local residents have received a COVID-19 vaccination

Rick Stillion
The Daily Jeffersonian
The COVID-19 vaccination rates for Guernsey, Noble and Belmont counties continue to rise.

Nearly one-quarter of the residents in Guernsey, Noble and Belmont counties had received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccination, as of Sunday.

The Ohio Department of Health reported 9,675 Guernsey County residents (24.89%), 3,376 Noble County residents (23.41%), and 16,012 residents of Belmont County (23.90%) had been vaccinated.

New vaccinations within a 24-hour period of Sunday's 2 p.m. reporting time included 142 in Belmont County, six in Guernsey County, and three in Noble County.

By comparison, 3,245,116 Ohioans (27.76%) had received at least one COVID-19 shot including 59,178 new vaccinations. All Ohio residents age 16 and older are now eligible to receive a vaccination.

Noble County leads the way locally in terms of the percentage of residents who have completed one form of the COVID-19 vaccine or another with 17.75% (2,560). Guernsey County was second with 16.64% (6,469) while 13.08% of Belmont County residents had finished their vaccinations.

Vaccines continue to be given locally by the Cambridge-Guernsey County and Noble County health departments, Southeastern Med and Muskingum Valley Health Centers.

The single largest day for vaccinations being started in Guernsey County was 598 on Feb. 25 while the greatest number of completed vaccinations (323) occurred on Friday when school employees in all three districts received their second shots.

The largest single-day total for starts in Noble County came on March 12 when 259 people were vaccinated. The greatest total of completed vaccinations (323) came on March 12.

As for Belmont County, 934 vaccinations were started on March 17 while 837 residents finished their doses the previous day.

The Ohio Public Health Advisory System has lowered several southeastern Ohio counties including Guernsey and Noble to Level 2 (orange) on the statewide ranking system.

Other local counties with a Level 2 rating include Harrison, Morgan, Monroe, Coshocton and Tuscarawas. Counties remaining at Level 3 (red) are Belmont, Washington and Muskingum.

Statewide, ODH officials report 1,011,622 COVID-19 cases in Ohioans resulting in 52,714 hospitalizations and 18,526 deaths.

Muskingum County leads the way locally with 8,460 COVID-19 cases followed by Tuscarawas, 8,247; Belmont, 5,290; Washington, 4,959; Guernsey, 2,987; Coshocton, 2,525; Noble, 1,309; Monroe, 1,246; Morgan, 1,040; and Harrison, 1,033.

The highest number of hospitalizations and deaths have occurred in Tuscarawas County with 626 and 237, respectively. Muskingum County is the only other county locally with more than 600 hospitalizations.

The remaining top five local counties for death rates after Tuscarawas County include Belmont County, 159; Muskingum, 123; Washington, 107; and Coshocton, 57.

Forty-eight deaths have been reported in Guernsey County and 37 in Noble County.

As eligibility is expanding this week, so is the supply of doses available.

Gov. Mike DeWine said last week the state is scheduled to receive more than 500,000 COVID-19 vaccination doses – an increase of 100,000 doses over Ohio's typical allotment – this week.

State officials have announced a mass vaccination clinic in the area will open soon.

The clinic at the Wayne Street Medical Campus, 330 East Eighth Street in Marietta, will open on April 1. Hours will be 5 to 8 p.m. on Thursdays and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays, according to the ODH website.

The clinic will be managed by Memorial Health Systems with support from ODH and Ohio Emergency Management Agency.

Appointments for the clinic in Marietta can be booked at the following locations:

• Online — www.gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov.

• Telephone — 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634).

For more information, visit www.mhsystem.org/coronavirus/ or call 1-844-877-4148.