COLUMBUS (News Talk 1480 WHBC) – For the fourth straight day, Governor Mike DeWine spoke at a live press conference, giving updates on the spread of the coronavirus in Ohio and what additional measures have been taken as a response. Below is an outline of everything that was discussed.
The number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Ohio is up to 14. Governor DeWine said this was to be expected, considering the state has just started testing. Health officials say the numbers will continue to rise each day as more tests are made available and given. DeWine said yesterday that the number of cases is expected to double every six weeks.
Dr. Amy Acton with the Ohio Department of Health says they now have enough data to give a better idea of who the coronavirus most commonly involved with in Ohio. Acton says the age range of the 14 confirmed cases is 34-66 with a median age of 48. Nine males have contracted the virus, while the other five belong to females.
The illness can be traced back as late as February 25 in some cases while in others, as early as March 11. Six Ohio counties now have at least one confirmed case. They include:
There are still no deaths due to the coronavirus in Ohio. The coronavirus has resulted in four hospitalizations.
Ohio will be issuing an order for its community jails and community corrections facilities throughout the state prohibiting visitation. Governor DeWine also asks that other protocols be put into place to screen vendors, contractors, etc.
With the implementation of an extended spring break, some concern arose in regards toward students not being able to receive free meals that they depend on during the week day. The USDA has approved Ohio’s waiver requests to keep school breakfast and lunch programs going while schools are closed. Schools will be able to provide every child under 18 with “grab and go” meals, ensuring that no child goes hungry while school is out.
Despite schools closing, Governor DeWine says learning should continue. DeWine acknowledged that each school is different, but requested every school do all it can to keep education going. DeWine says many schools have plans for online learning options, and there are a wealth of free, online resources.
DeWine and Lt. Governor John Husted have sent a letter to President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence asking for additional waivers. They have also requested access to more personal protective equipment for healthcare workers.
The State of Ohio will not be closing Daycare facilities at this point, but it could happen in the future. DeWine says that parents using daycares should start thinking about what their alternatives could be. The Governor’s recommendation is that you remove your child from daycare if you can. Children, unless they have a preexisting condition, they are probably going to get through it okay, but they are potential carriers. DeWine also emphasized that anyone over the age of 60 is at significantly increased risk. If you normally rely on elderly grandparents to provide childcare, DeWine says to please consider alternatives.