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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WJW)– Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted held a news conference on the coronavirus pandemic Thursday afternoon. It was their first news conference since Oct. 29. They did not hold one on Tuesday because of Election Day.

DeWine named Stephanie McCloud the new director of the Ohio Department of Health and Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff as the chief medical officer of the department.

The Ohio Department of Health said there have been 235,170 total confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 and 5,461 deaths in the state. It is presumed that 178,646 people have recovered.

In the last 24 hours, 4,961 cases, 33 deaths, 214 hospitalizations and 23 intensive care unit admissions were reported to the state health department. That’s the highest number of cases reported in a 24-hour period in Ohio since the beginning of the pandemic.

DeWine called the number “shocking,” noting about a month ago the daily number of coronavirus cases in Ohio was around 1,000.

Every county in Ohio meets the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for high incidence of the virus. There are now 56 counties, or 86 percent of the state’s population, in the red level of the Ohio Public Health Advisory System.

“COVID-19 is everywhere. We can’t hide from it. We have to face it,” DeWine said.

According to the governor, the state continues to see an increase in coronavirus patients hospitalized, in the ICU and on ventilators. There are 2,075 patients on Thursday, which is a 55 percent increase in hospitalized patients compared to two weeks ago.

“We are once again at a critical juncture in our fight against COVID-19. Cases are spiking and are at an all-time high, but, the good news is that we are closer than ever to getting a vaccine. It’s always darkest before the dawn, but the light is coming. Ohio needs to be ready,” DeWine said.

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