COLUMBUS, Ohio — The number of people occupying hospital beds because of the coronavirus is decreasing.

What You Need To Know

  • Eye on Ohio: The Ohio Center for Journalism fought the state for access to the number of available hospital beds and other equipment related to COVID-19

  • Eye on Ohio filed a lawsuit in the Court of Claims of Ohio to obtain the requested information

  • In November, Judge Patrick M. McGrath ruled the Ohio Department of Health must provide the requested information

Each week, Spectrum News 1 speaks with Eye on Ohio: Ohio Center for Journalism about the latest hospital bed data. The organization collects the data from the state health department and looks for possible trends.

The latest data was reported to Eye on Ohio on April 9. The data shows 3,677 available Med/Surg beds. The beds are occupied by the average patient hospitalized for COVID-19. The data also shows 852 intensive care unit beds were available on the same day.

These numbers are an increase from the week before. The Ohio Department of Health reported 2,638 available Med/Surg beds and 602 available ICU beds on April 2.

Lucia Walinchus is the executive director for Eye On Ohio.

"I think the number one thing that we're seeing from this data is that vaccines really work," Walinchus said. "As vaccinations have spiked, so have available hospital beds. Correlation doesn't always equal causation, but in this case, we're really seeing that impact."

Last week, she explained how the Cleveland area in particular faced a small surge in coronavirus patients.

"Overall, we are doing much better and that's certainly awesome and we're really seeing an effect," she said. "There's quite a dip once we see the vaccine come into play, but there's still areas that have a lot more infections and we're still seeing the brunt of that. Obviously, if you can't breathe, where the local hospital is, is much more important than going to someplace down the road."

There were 152 available Med/Surg beds designated for COVID-19 patients on April 2 in Cleveland. More than twice that number was available the week before. On March 26, the state reported 346 available beds in that category.

On April 9, the state reported 394 available Med/Surg beds throughout the Cleveland area.

Click here to view the latest data from Eye on Ohio.