COVID-19
COVID-19
OHIO – Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has had daily press conferences regarding the state’s response to the coronavirus. As of Tuesday, Ohio is under a state-mandated “stay at home” order.

The order, signed by Dr. Amy Acton of the Ohio Department of Health, allows for only essential businesses to remain open, however, the wording is open to interpretation and many businesses have decided to keep going. The stay at home order requires citizens to remain home unless they are out for essential business.

Items of essential business include for health and safety, for necessary supplies and services, for outdoor activity (citizens must maintain social distancing), for essential work, and to take care of others.

DeWine said that businesses that are non-essential that remain open are subject to fines and could have state licenses revoked. He recommends Ohioans call their local Health Department (419-238-0808) or law enforcement to report non-essential businesses who remain open.

Essential businesses that do remain open must adhere to social distancing guidelines such as staying six feet apart. Businesses must also provide personal protective equipment such as hand sanitizer and must ensure that employers are not coming to work sick by doing such things as checking temperatures before employees enter the facility.

The order also states that there should be no private or public gatherings that take place out of a single household at all (unless for First Amendment protected speech) except for the limited purposes outlined in the order (essential business).

Essential restaurants are to remain carry-out/delivery/drive-thru only.

The full order, which outlines which businesses are essential and which are not, can be found at coronavirus.ohio.gov. The order is set to expire April 6, but DeWine said the State may revisit that date when the time comes.

Over the past week, DeWine has also made the following orders:

CHILD CARE/DAY CARE:

Beginning on Thursday, March 26, 2020, all operating child care centers in Ohio must do so under a Temporary Pandemic Child Care license and follow these guidelines:

- There should be no more than six children in a class.

- Ratios must be kept at one teacher to no more than six children.

- Children whose parents are employed by the same entity should be kept together whenever possible.

- The same teachers and children in each room should be maintained whenever possible.

- There should be limited use of shared space or mixing of groups.

- If shared space is used, a rigorous cleaning schedule must be in place.

- Parent interaction should be limited at drop off and pick up.

The program will operate until April 30, with the potential to extend and adjust as needed.

DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITY DAY SUPPORT:

Governor DeWine ordered all adult day support and vocational habilitation services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities to temporarily stop providing services in settings of more than 10 people.

“This order is necessary because individuals with developmental disabilities traditionally receive these services in large groups, and right now, this just isn’t safe,” said Governor DeWine. “We’ve been working with service providers to ensure that these individuals will still receive the services they need despite these temporary closures.”

The order became effective on Tuesday at 9 p.m.

NEW WEBSITE FOR BUSINESSES:

Businesses and workers can now access all of these resources related to COVID-19 in one place at ohio.gov/BusinessHelp.

The portal includes information on unemployment benefits, the Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program, the Liquor Buyback Program, modified rules for trucking to help ship critical supplies into the state, the delay of BWC Premiums, etc.

DeWine has also placed a hiring freeze for all agencies, boards, and commissions under the control of the Governor with exemptions. Last week, DeWine had announced several mandates including the closure of all K-12 schools through April 3 and the closure of nearly all of Ohio’s BMV’s. He announced the postponement of all elective surgeries and procedures in order to help preserve personal protective equipment (PPE).

Allen and Van Wert counties currently have no confirmed cases of coronaviruses, but health officials have stated that does not mean the viruse is not in the community.

Ohio has 564 confirmed cases of coronavirus in 49 counties. Of those cases, 145 people have been hospitalized. There have been 8 deaths so far.

Number of counties with cases: Ashland (1), Ashtabula (3), Belmont (2), Butler (18), Carroll (3), Champaign (1), Clark (2), Clermont (5), Clinton (1), Columbiana (3), Coshocton (3), Crawford (1), Cuyahoga (167), Darke (1), Defiance (2), Delaware (11), Erie (1), Fairfield (2), Franklin (75), Gallia (1), Geauga (5), Greene (3), Hamilton (38), Hancock (1), Highland (1), Huron (2), Knox (1), Lake (11), Licking (2), Logan (2), Lorain (30), Lucas (11), Madison (1), Mahoning (28), Marion (4), Medina (15), Miami (19), Montgomery (10), Portage (4), Richland (4), Sandusky (1), Stark (13), Summit (36), Trumbull (4), Tuscarawas (3), Union (2), Warren (7), Washington (1), Wood (2)

Counties with deaths: Cuyahoga (2), Erie (1), Franklin (2), Gallia (1), Lucas (1), Stark (1)