COVID-19 Update from the StateJune 19, 2020
Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted made the following announcements at their press conference on June 18, 2020:
Governor DeWine announced that although Ohio is seeing an overall declining number of COVID-19 cases, there is currently an uptick in cases in Southwest Ohio. Increases are being seen in Montgomery County, Greene County, Clark County, Warren County, and Hamilton County. Case counts in these counties by zip code can be found on coronavirus.ohio.gov.
In response to this increase in cases, Governor DeWine announced that pop-up testing sites will surge into the zip codes with the highest number of cases. Testing at pop-up sites is free, and citizens are not required to live in the community where the pop-up site is located to receive a test. New pop-up testing sites will also be scheduled in other locations to ensure testing accessibility throughout the state. Click here for a listing of pop-up testing sites.
Dr. Amy Edwards, a pediatric infectious disease doctor and associate medical director for infection control at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital in Cleveland, today provided information on an increase in the percentage of children testing positive for COVID-19 at Rainbow Babies. Dr. Edwards said that hospital admissions for COVID-19 in children at Rainbow Babies have also increased. Symptoms of COVID-19 in kids are similar to symptoms in adults. If your child seems to be having trouble breathing or is not eating or drinking, Dr. Edwards recommends calling your pediatrician to get your child tested.
Governor DeWine announced the creation of a new Hospital PPE Readiness Stockpile, which will be compiled and stored by Ohio hospitals throughout the state. Items in the PPE stockpile will be distributed to residents and staff at long-term care facilities should there be an increase in COVID-19 cases. Hospitals have begun to build a 30-day reserve of PPE based on several calculations, including the state’s surge models, the number of residents and staff at Ohio nursing homes, as well as recent FEMA PPE allocations to each Ohio nursing home. Each hospital will have a different amount of stockpile that is calculated specifically for the region. The stockpile is a collaborative effort between the Ohio Hospital Association, hospitals throughout the state, and several state agencies, including the departments of Health, Medicaid, and Public Safety.
Governor DeWine signed an executive order that expands the definition of good cause throughout the COVID-19 State of Emergency. Good Cause now includes the following situations:
- A medical professional recommends that an individual not return to work because that person falls into a category that is considered high-risk for catching COVID-19 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and their employee cannot offer teleworking options.
- The employee is 65 years of age or older.
- There is tangible evidence of a health and safety violation by the employer that does not allow the employee to practice social distancing, hygiene, and wearing personal protective equipment.
- The individual has been potentially exposed to COVID-19 and subject to a quarantine period as prescribed by a medical or health professional.
- The individual must stay home to care for a family member who is suffering from COVID-19 or subject to a prescribed quarantine period by a medical or health professional.
Click here to view the signed order.
Lt. Governor Husted announced that because most of Ohio’s economy is now open, the coronavirus.ohio.gov/JobSearch website will transition back to Ohio’s regular job-search website, OhioMeansJobs.com. OhioMeansJobs.com currently has over 120,000 job postings, with almost half paying over $50,000. Approximately 76,000 jobs require less than a bachelor’s degree, while 36,000 require either a bachelor’s degree or associate’s degree. Approximately 77 percent of the job openings are considered in-demand.
Lt. Governor Husted also announced that Phase II of the Responsible RestartOhio plan for sports activities will allow contact practice for all sports to resume on Monday, June 22nd. The Ohio High School Athletic Association and the summer league work group worked together with the Ohio Department of Health on this plan. Click here to read the guidelines.
In a sign that Ohioans are heading back to work, statistics the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) reported to the U.S. Department of Labor today show that for the seventh straight week, continued weekly claims for unemployment benefits have declined. Those who remain jobless filed 287,499 fewer continued claims last week compared to the peak in April.
Over the last 13 weeks, ODJFS has distributed more than $4.1 billion in unemployment compensation payments to more than 700,000 claimants. Of the more than 1 million applications the agency has received, more than 94% have been processed, with less than 6% pending. Pursuant to an order from the U.S. Department of Labor, Ohio will release unemployment numbers on a weekly basis when the national report is released on Thursday.
Ohioans can apply for unemployment benefits online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at unemployment.ohio.gov. It is also possible to file by phone at 877-644-6562 or TTY at 888- 642-8203, Monday through Friday 7AM to 7PM, Saturday 9AM to 5PM, and Sunday 9AM to 1PM. Employers with questions should email UCTech@jfs.ohio.gov.
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