COLUMBUS, Ohio — Governor Mike DeWine, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted, and Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton are holding a briefing on the state's response to coronavirus on Tuesday at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus.
The Ohio Department of Health is reporting there are now 7,280 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state. 324 people have died and 2,154 have been hospitalized.
Among Tuesday's notes, DeWine provided an update on the progress of alternative care centers to deal with potential surges in cases of coronavirus. While preparations in Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati continue, DeWine said similar facilities in Toledo, Youngstown, and Dayton will be held in reserve.
Acton gave a few clues about how the recovery process might take shape during her remarks. "We're going to move forward together and we're going to move forward smartly," she began. "We do know that a new world will be with social distancing, but it will be a functional social distancing, and will probably include a slow trickle back to work with these masks. And we'll all have to be honest when we're sick."
Acton also noted the state is issuing a new order to share positive COVID-19 name/address information with dispatchers so that first responders can be properly protected when responding to an emergency. That information will be kept confidential.
On Monday, DeWine made several key announcements regarding coronavirus in Ohio:
- The Ohio National Guard will begin providing assistance to the medical staff at Pickaway Correctional Institution. There are a number of medical staff out sick due to coronavirus. Guard members will provide triage support, taking temperatures, and helping with non-COVID19 cases.
- DeWine asked Dr. Amy Acton to issue an order that will require long-term care facilities to notify residents and families within 24 hours of a resident or staff member becoming infected.
- In-person sale of liquor in the following counties will be restricted only to Ohioans: Ashtabula, Trumbull. Mahoning, Columbiana, Jefferson, Belmont. DeWine says the restriction became necessary due to repeated instances of persons from Pennsylvania coming into these counties for the sole or main purpose of purchasing liquor. "Right now this creates an unacceptable public health issue," he said.
During her presentation at the briefing, Acton mentioned the importance of masks for the present, as well as the future.
"These masks are being viewed as another weapon to get back to normal. These are much like the other social distancing actions we've taken. We will be looking at a year of using these in new ways."
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