Throughout the week, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine was joined by Lt. Governor Jon Husted and Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton M.D., MPH, to announce decisions made regarding the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) throughout Ohio.
On Monday, Governor DeWine ordered an immediate hiring freeze for all agencies, boards, and commissions. The only exceptions are for positions that provide a direct response to the COVID-19 pandemic, safety and security, and direct care or institutional services.
Governor DeWine also announced that any child care facility that remains open to care for children under a Temporary Pandemic Child Care license must give priority to families on the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Monday evening, Ohio’s “Stay at Home” order went into effect at 11:59 p.m.
On Wednesday, Governor DeWine issued the following statement after the Ohio General Assembly passed House Bill 197, which enacts numerous provisions to assist with the COVID-19 pandemic:
"I want to thank Senate President Obhof, House Speaker Householder, Minority Leaders Sykes and Yuko, and all members of the Ohio General Assembly who worked for the bipartisan and unanimous passage of House Bill 197. This bill will ensure continuity of government, extended mail-in voting for our primary, clarity for schools and students, relief to workers impacted by COVID-19, and measures to make sure we are prepared to help Ohioans get back to work when this pandemic subsides. I applaud the collaborative work on this bill and look forward to signing it soon."
On Thursday, Governor DeWine continued to remind Ohioans of the coming shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE), such as masks, goggles, gloves, gowns and face shields for healthcare workers and first responders. The state of Ohio is asking residents and businesses who can donate PPE, or any other essential service or resource, to email email@example.com.
All PPE items are of critical need, including, but limited to:
Note: the above items are not intended to be in order of importance.
An expanded COVID-19 data dashboard has also been designed by the InnovateOhio Platform and can be accessed by visiting coronavirus.ohio.gov.
Also on Thursday, Governor DeWine, Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof (R–Medina), and Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder (R–Glenford) jointly released a statement regarding their mutual agreement to postpone the delivery of the Governor’s annual State of the State Address to a later date.
On Friday, Governor DeWine signed House Bill 197, which provides emergency relief to Ohioans during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ohio also has launched a website to encourage Ohioans to continue to support local retailers and restaurants by shopping online, choosing local, ordering carryout from restaurants, and taking virtual tours of well-known attractions around the state. There are currently more than 250 local restaurants, shops, and virtual activities being featured online. To find a local shop or restaurant to support, or to have your business featured, go to Ohio.org/SupportLocalOhio.
On Saturday, Governor DeWine made an urgent plea to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to issue an emergency waiver for the use of new technology that could sterilize up to 160,000 used personal protective face masks per day in Ohio.
New resources are now available on Ohio's COVID-19 website to help parents with education resources. The resources for at-home learning can be found at coronavirus.ohio.gov/LearnAtHome.
On Sunday, Governor DeWine and Lt. Governor Husted expressed deep disappointment in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) decision to limit the use of new technology to sterilize desperately-needed surgical masks in Ohio and other parts of the United States.
As of Sunday afternoon, there are 1,653 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio and 29 deaths. A total of 403 people are hospitalized, including 139 admissions to intensive care units. In-depth data can be accessed by visiting coronavirus.ohio.gov.
For more information on Ohio’s response to COVID-19, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.