Ohio has been added to the Ohio Department of Health’s COVID-19 Travel Advisory map, meaning the state is recommending Ohioans avoid traveling to Ohio, and those entering Ohio after traveling from Ohio are advised to self-quarantine in Ohio for 14 days.
Obviously, outside of The Matrix or a Christopher Nolan movie, this is physically impossible. To be clear, you are free to move about the state, but the ODH recommends staying home except for necessary trips.
The ODH included this statement on this week's travel advisory:
"This is the first week since April where Ohio’s positivity for COVID-19 has increased above 15%. The state has seen record levels of cases, deaths, and hospitalizations in the past week, and all Ohioans can help to limit the spread and impact of this virus. This includes recommendations to stay at home except for necessary trips for supplies, consistent mask-wearing when around others, and frequent hand washing. Together we can help stop the spread of COVID-19."
Ohio was added to its own travel advisory map because, as ODH states, the 7-day rolling average positivity rate for COVID-19 tests in the state rose above 15% for the first time since April this week. Any state with a positivity rate above 15% is put on the map, and the ODH recommends against travel to those states with high positivity.
The positivity rate is an indicator of how much COVID-19 there is in a community, ODH states, and comes from state-level aggregate data from The COVID Tracking Project. The travel advisory is updated each Wednesday, based on data from Tuesday.
The 13 other states included in Wednesday’s travel advisory and their average positivity rates are:
Idaho - 49.0%
Iowa - 43.4%
South Dakota - 41.1%
Kansas - 40.0%
Alabama - 33.0%
Pennsylvania - 29.0%
Arizona - 23.0%
Mississippi - 22.0%
Utah - 20.0%
Missouri - 19.0%
Nevada - 17.0%
Montana - 15.0%
Arkansas - 15.0%
The advisory and self-quarantine recommendations are intended for both leisure and business travel and should be heeded by both Ohioans and out-of-state travelers, the ODH stated. It is also guidance and not a mandate.
For more information on the state's travel advisory, and recommendations for self-quarantining in Ohio after traveling to Ohio from Ohio, click here.
This article was written by Ian Cross for WEWS.