ohio department of health

Doug Steele (left) and his son Matthew enjoy a visit at the Cincinnati facility where Doug lives prior to restrictions due to the coronavirus.
Courtesy of Matthew Steele

Nearly 10% of the state's confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio are in long-term care facilities such as nursing homes and assisted living communities. Some residents and staff are among the dead. 

The state says it will shed light on more information about the spread of coronavirus in nursing homes, but some data - like the number of deaths - will remain hidden.

Nearly half of all COVID-19 deaths in Summit County come from one retirement community.

Ohio Living Rockynol in Akron has seen seven residents die from the infection, said Melissa Dardinger, spokesperson for Ohio Living.

“I do believe those deaths occurred in the hospital, not onsite at Ohio Living Rockynol,” Dardinger said.

More coronavirus testing and more protective masks will soon be available statewide as Ohio officials work to continue flattening Ohio’s COVID-19 curve. 

At his daily briefing Wednesday, Gov. Mike DeWine also announced further steps towards easing the essential businesses order.

Dozens of confirmed COVID-19 deaths have been recorded across the state in just the last few days, with confirmed cases now reported in 87 of Ohio’s 88 counties.

Spiritus Tattoo, a tattoo parlor in Clintonville, is closed as a non-essential business. A sign posted on the storefront window cautions would-be criminals that all valuables have been removed.
Cindy Gaillard / WOSU

When it comes to whether Ohio should reopen businesses or keep them closed amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, there’s no doubt where state Sen. Andrew Brenner (R-Powell) stands.

DeWine Seeks To Loosen Some Medicaid Requirements

Apr 14, 2020

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine on Tuesday announced he is submitting a waiver application to the federal government asking for flexibility in Medicaid specifications in order to better combat the coronavirus. That includes such measures as allowing services to be provided at alternative locations and removing staffing level requirements.

Gov. Mike DeWine gives his daily coronavirus briefing on April 1, 2020.
Office of Gov. Mike DeWine

Gov. Mike DeWine announced a new order Monday requiring long-term care facilities to notify families within 24 hours if a resident or staff member has tested positive for COVID-19. Although the Ohio Department of Health has encouraged facilities to do this in the past, it is now a requirement. 

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

The Ohio Department of Health is now tracking probable cases of COVID-19 in the state through a detailed case definition that the department says will help them study the spread of the virus.

About 75 people wearing masks and carrying signs protest outside the Ohio Statehouse on Thursday, April 9, 2020, in Columbus, Ohio.
Karen Kasler / Statehouse News Bureau

Around 75 protesters gathered outside of the Ohio Statehouse on Thursday to criticize the government's restrictions during the coronavirus outbreak.

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.

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.

Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton speaks at a daily coronavirus press conference.
Office of Gov. Mike DeWine

Gov. Mike DeWine and Ohio's top health leader say Ohioans should wear homemade and non-medical grade masks when they go out in public. However wearing a mask doesn’t mean you can’t get coronavirus.

Coronavirus In Ohio: Hospitals Remain Quiet On Bed And Ventilator Counts

Apr 3, 2020
Urgent care at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, on March 31, 2020.
David Holm / WOSU

The Ohio Department of Health gets daily updates on the total number of beds and ventilators that could be available for COVID-19 patients at hospitals throughout the state. But so far the agency hasn’t provided any hospital-by-hospital breakdown, and the agencies that collect capacity information on their behalf have also declined to release their assessments.

Gov. Mike DeWine inside the Governor's Residence in Columbus on Dec. 13, 2019.
John Minchillo / Associated Press

Ohio has extended its stay-at-home order, including the ban on non-essential businesses, until May 1. 

Ohio has gotten all that it’s likely to get from the National Strategic Stockpile of medical supplies – a plane dropped off gowns, gloves, coveralls, face shields, surgical masks and N-95 masks in Columbus Tuesday. But the state says it’s not enough for now or through the surge of COVID-19 patients that is expected in the near future.

Dr. Amy Acton, Ohio Department of Health director, speaks at a coronavirus briefing.
Andy Chow / Ohio Public Radio

The state will start tracking ventilators through a new database as part of the ongoing effort to build up capacity for the projected peak of coronavirus in Ohio.

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