COLUMBUS, Ohio — Former Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton is sounding the alarm as the coronavirus surges through every part of Ohio.
In an interview with The Columbus Dispatch, Acton, who resigned from the director position June 11, said the COVID-19 pandemic still has months of life to live.
Acton, who has remained out of the public since her resignation, spoke to the newspaper and said that the current surge in cases is just the tip of the iceberg, the Dispatch says.
“So this is the Titanic at this point and you can’t turn the Titanic on a dime,” Acton told the paper. “So, we’re going down. It’s some amount of going down, so let’s minimize the amount.”
hen the pandemic first hit Ohio, Acton and epidemiologists at Ohio State University predicted the state could eventually report around 10,000 new COVID-19 infections per day. Those projections never came to fruition during Acton’s tenure, leading to harsh criticism for the former health director.
Nearly eight months later though, Ohio surpassed Acton’s projection, reporting 11,885 new cases Monday. Although the record could be a data anomaly due to a backlog of test results, Ohio’s new daily cases have consistently hovered between 6,000 and 9,000 since Nov. 12.
“We’re beyond there,” Acton said of the initial predictions. “We don’t have a curve to flatten right now. It’s so bad … It’s just like a line going up. I couldn’t even say flatten it yet because it’s that exponential.”
Ohio is indeed near the number of daily cases Acton predicted in March, said Dan Tierney, a spokesman for Gov. Mike DeWine. Tierney acknowledged the severity of the moment but said Ohio is better positioned to handle the growing virus cases now than it was in March due to newly available treatments and preventative measures.