Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton stated Wednesday that there were 7,628 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ohio based on limited testing with 163 probable cases.
The data also revealed 2, 237 hospitalizations due to the virus and 677 admissions to intensive care units. The number of Coronavirus deaths was at 361 at the time of Wednesday’s press conference.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine stated that as Ohioans we should be proud of our problem solving and innovative attitude. DeWine stated Battelle’s process of sanitizing N95 masks in light of the PPE crisis was just one example of Ohio’s innovative potential.
DeWine stated the need for PPE is not only within hospitals but extends to first responders. Dewine announced Ohio’s partnership with Battelle to extend their sanitization services to law enforcement agencies and first responders across the state. DeWine the Ohio State Highway Patrol has developed a statewide collection and distribution process to make it as easy as possible for first responders. “Beginning this Friday at 8 a.m. local law enforcement and EMS agencies can bring their packaged N95 masks to any Ohio State Patrol post in the state and those masks will be brought to Battelle in Columbus. Battelle will sanitize them and the patrol will bring the masks back to their respective posts where agencies can then pick them up,” said DeWine. “This will contribute greatly to Ohio’s efforts to protect its protectors.”
Dewine stated that Battelle would be providing this service free of charge.
DeWine stated guidelines for how the masks were to be packaged would be sent out by the Ohio State Patrol, and estimated the turn around time for this process to be between two and three days.
DeWine stated that in response to a nationwide shortage of testing and testing materials a team of Ohio State researchers worked overnight to create an in-house recipe for the critical transportation medium. DeWine said that other partnership between Wexner Medical center and other institutions led to the creation of 3-D printed testing swabs with the first order of 15,000 swabs arriving this week, and more on the way for a total of 250,000 test kits to be distributed.
DeWine stated that April 15 would have been tax day and while those deadlines have been extended, it is time to complete the 2020 census form. “One of the things this determines, of course, is federal dollars that come back to Ohio,” said DeWine. DeWine stated Ohio’s response rate was lagging behind slightly, with 52% while Michigan was at 55%. DeWine challenged fellow buckeyes to come back and exceed those numbers.
In regards to Ohio prisons, DeWine stated that two more inmates at the Pickaway Correctional Institution had died from probable cases of COVID-19. DeWine stated on Wednesday he approved the release 105 inmates that were determined to meet the necessary criteria for an early release.
Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932
© 2020 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved