COVID-19

color photo of empty interior of the Ohio Theatre
JRD Photography / Wikimeia Commons

As Ohio’s COVID-19 crisis continues, Columbus-area arts organizations have canceled dozens of performances by local and visiting artists, world premieres of new musical works, exhibitions, classes, international tours and other events this spring. All anticipate major financial losses in the wake of Gov. Mike DeWine’s executive order banning large gatherings.

The Ohio Hospital Association has sent out its guidelines for allocating scarce resources, detailing what medical staff should do if they don't have the equipment they need to treat patients with COVID-19.

Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville, Ohio.
John Minchillo / Associated Press

Following reports of deaths from COVID-19 in a federal prison in Ohio, and as more inmates and staffers test positive for the coronavirus in three state prisons, officials have identified more prisoners who could be released early.

An elephant at the Columbus Zoo, which is closed under the state's coronavirus orders.
Columbus Zoo / Facebook

Columbus Zoo officials already had their pandemic plan in action when the Bronx Zoo reported a tiger tested positive for the coronavirus. Three other tigers and several lions at that zoo are showing symptoms.

Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder
Paul Vernon / AP

Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder named 24 lawmakers to a bipartisan task force that will research economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Gov. Mike DeWine signs an executive order.
Office of Gov. Mike DeWine

Gov. Mike DeWine said he plans to ask for the early release of 141 inmates under Ohio's "Overcrowding Emergency" statute in order to help reduce and stop the spread of the novel coronavirus among the state's prison population.

A sign at Dempsey's says "shut happens."
David Holm / WOSU

The stay-at-home order in place for Ohio has been extended until May 1, and each state neighboring Ohio has imposed similar measures. Both have seen higher numbers of both coronavirus cases and deaths.

Dayton and Columbus are both reporting spikes in overdose deaths. Some experts say it's at least in part because of pandemic-related stress. Ann Stevens with Montgomery County Alcohol Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services says there's been a 58% increase in fatal OD's compared to a year ago.

Mill Run Rehab Center and Assisted Living in Hilliard.
Macintosh Co.

Mill Run Rehabilitation Center and Assisted Living in Hilliard says 10 people, including eight employees and two residents, have tested positive COVID-19. The facility is now considered a hotspot for the novel coronavirus.

The new CHOICES domestic violence shelter which opened in January and can accomodate up to 120 people and currently has a waitlist of more than 40 people.
Paige Pfleger / WOSU

Sue Villilo directs LSS CHOICES For Victims Of Domestic Violence. At their shelter in Columbus, the phone lines have been less busy these past few weeks.

“We actually have a little bit of a dip in seeking services right now. I think to some extent that isn’t too surprising,” Villilo says. “It’s probably harder for people to contact us if they’re in the home with the abuser.”

Dr. Amy Acton, Ohio Department of Health director
OFFICE OF GOV. MIKE DEWINE

Ohio’s coronavirus tracking website is now showing a breakdown of COVID-19 cases and deaths by race and ethnicity. However the state's health director is cautioning that this information is incomplete.

Federal Correctional Institution Elkton in Lisbon, Ohio.
Federal Bureau of Prisons

Three inmates recently died from coronavirus inside the Elkton Federal Correctional Institution in Columbiana County. But the spread of the disease inside the prison, which is run by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, has Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine concerned.

Updated at 9:58 a.m. ET

Federal prisons are wrestling with the rapid spread of the coronavirus at more than two dozen facilities across the country in an outbreak that has already claimed the lives of at least seven inmates and infected almost 200 more, as well as 63 staff.

One of the hardest-hit so far is the Federal Correctional Complex in Oakdale, La., located about a three-hour drive west of New Orleans. It's home to two low-security prisons and a minimum security camp, which all told house some 2,000 inmates.

A sign outside a Kroger grocery store encourages shoppers to maintain social distancing while in the store.
Kroger

Kroger and Giant Eagle have joined other stores in following Gov. Mike DeWine’s order to limit the number of customers shopping in retail stores at a given time to stop the spread of COVID-19.

The Geauga County Health District has received numerous complaints that some Amish residents in the area are not practicing social distancing, which is needed to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Health Commissioner Tom Quade said some residents have expressed concerns that those in the Amish community are still holding church services, going to school and riding in packed vans, known informally as 'Amish taxis' that transport them to grocery stores or their place of work.

"(The Amish are) not all the way there yet, certainly, but they are making progress," Quade said.

Pages