Coronavirus: Under 6,000 cases reported for first time in nearly 2 weeks

People wait in line at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds for free coronavirus testing on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. STAFF/MARSHALL GORBY

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People wait in line at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds for free coronavirus testing on Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. STAFF/MARSHALL GORBY

The state reported 5,857 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, the lowest number of new cases since Dec. 16, the Ohio Department of Health reported.

The state passed 670,000 cases, with a total of 670,525 cases as of Sunday. ODH reported 33 deaths and 273 hospitalizations today, bringing total dead to 8,509 and total hospitalizations to 36,786.

In Ohio, 4,372 people are currently hospitalized for the coronavirus. In southwest Ohio, 1,149 people are currently hospitalized, an increase of 31 people over the past 24 hours.

ExploreLawmakers press Trump on relief bill as jobless aid expires

Some federal unemployment benefits expired Saturday night for millions of people as a COVID-19 relief bill remained unsigned by President Trump.

The relief bill waiting for Trump’s signature offers an extra $300-a-week in benefits through March 14.

A further potential complication: If Trump does not relent and sign the bill, the U.S. government runs out of money at midnight Dec. 28. If that happens, tens of thousands of workers could be furloughed, possibly affecting non-essential workers at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and across the federal government.

The two expired unemployment programs are the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, available mostly to the self-employed, temporary gig workers and others who are not usually eligible for state unemployment aid. The other, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), provided up to 13 weeks of additional payments to those who have exhausted other benefits.

While the bill remains in limbo, $600 direct payments for qualifying adults and $600 for each dependent and child are on hold. Trump has urged Congress to raise those payments to $2,000.

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