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COVID-19 Cases Count to be Underreported Today Due to Electronic Lab Reporting Processing Error

Jan. 25, 2022

Contact: ODH Office of Communications 614-644-8562

COVID-19 Cases Count to be Underreported Today Due to Electronic Lab Reporting Processing Error

COLUMBUS – The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) will today report an artificially low, incomplete COVID-19 reported case count caused by an electronic laboratory reporting (ELR) processing error, when reported case count numbers are updated at 2:00 p.m. on coronavirus.ohio.gov.

Testing data from laboratories across the state is automatically submitted to ODH through an ELR system that feeds into the Ohio Disease Reporting System (ODRS). ODH received five incorrectly formatted ELR files from a long-term care facility around 5 p.m. on Jan. 24. Every file submitted contained both valid lab results and invalid rows of data. The volume of invalid data rows caused a backlog in ODH’s ELR processing systems; this then delayed the processing of confirmed COVID-19 cases from other facilities in ODRS. Thus, no lab results have been processed since 5 p.m. on Jan. 24.

Reported case counts will be underreported today until the ELR processing backlog is cleared and valid lab results can pass through the system successfully.

As these results are processed, positive cases will be attributed to their proper illness onset date on the COVID-19 overview dashboard, which better depicts the spread of COVID-19 in Ohio. The most helpful indicators of COVID-19 spread in Ohio continue to be COVID-19 hospitalizationstest positivitycase rates per 100,000 residents, and cases by illness onset date.

Throughout the pandemic, ODH has discovered the impacts of high user demand on antiquated technical systems. ODH continues to take steps to enhance real-time data analysis.

COVID-19 vaccines continue to be the best tool against the virus. Ensuring vaccines are up-to-date is critical to having the best protection possible. COVID-19 vaccines are widely available throughout the state. Many providers offer walk-in appointments, or Ohioans can schedule a vaccination appointment at gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov. Ohioans who want to learn more about the safety, efficacy, and side effects of COVID-19 vaccines should talk to their doctor, nurse, or pharmacist, or visit coronavirus.ohio.gov/vaccine.


About the Ohio Department of Health The Ohio Department of Health’s mission is advancing the health and well-being of all Ohioans by transforming the state’s public health system through unique partnerships and funding streams; addressing the community conditions and inequities that lead to disparities in health outcomes; and implementing data-driven, evidence-based solutions.