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New COVID cases in area rise

Washington and surrounding counties saw increased rates of new COVID-19 cases in the latest weekly numbers released by the Ohio Department of Health.

Athens County vaulted from the eighth lowest rate of new cases per 100,000 people from Dec. 23 to Jan. 5 to the 29th highest over the Dec. 30 to Jan. 12 period, according to statistics released Thursday.

Athens County reported 604 new cases in the first two-week period for a rate of 924.6 per 100,000 in the county of 65,327 people. The number of new cases more than doubled to 1,224 for the more recent two-week span, making the rate 1,873.7.

Monroe County jumped from 63rd to 33rd in the state with just 99 more new cases in the latter period. With a population of 13,654, the county’s rate rose from 1,113.2 (152 new cases) to 1,838.3 (251) per 100,000.

The increases in other area counties were not as steep.

Washington County actually dropped from 75th to 79th, despite seeing 702 new cases in the most recent period compared to 587 in the prior one. The rate rose from 979.8 to 1,171.7 per 100,000 but was outpaced by some other counties.

Morgan County, with 14,508 residents, went from 64th (1,095.9) to 57th (1,509.5) with 159 new cases compared to 219.

Noble County, home to 14,424 people, saw 210 new cases, up from 147. That made its rate 1,455.9 (63rd), up from 1,019.1 (70th).

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