Nick McWilliams reporting – With what is being described as the worst spikes of COVID-19 Ohio has seen, health officials in the state are giving their own testimonies to the havoc the virus is wreaking.

Tuscarawas County sits as the seventh ranked county in terms of new cases per 100,000, just under 1,000 as of Monday at 2 p.m.

All told, 1,518 cases are active, with 69 deaths related to coronavirus in the county, and now 2,276 recovered.

One health official who appeared during Governor Mike DeWine’s Monday press conference was Stacey Morris, the COVID Unit Nurse Manager for nearby Cleveland Clinic Akron General Hospital.

Morris says that the hardest part for some has been being an extended family for patients who are unable to see loved ones due to restrictions.

“When there is visitation that means the odds are not in your favor. Whenever you’re able to come in and actually say goodbye, and when we have to get you ready for that point, that’s the scary, harsh reality of this virus. We don’t ever want anybody to get to that point, but we have to deal with that. And the caregiver team deals with that every day here.”

Given the recent Thanksgiving holiday and Christmas fast approaching, officials foreshadowed another surge in the midst of the biggest spike of coronavirus in Ohio.

ICU Nurse Dara Pence at Riverside Hospital in Columbus says that nurses everywhere are urging residents to get the supplies they need and hunker down to prevent even more damage, noting she prefers to see shortages of toiletries and other items instead of ventilators and life-saving equipment.

DeWine once again noted the proposed coronavirus vaccine inches closer to being approved by the Federal Drug Administration, and is slated to be unveiled sometime in mid-December.

At this time, no state update is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon.

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