Coronavirus Pandemic: Ohio to release Halloween guidance Friday

Coronavirus Pandemic: What you need to know Thursday

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine held an afternoon briefing to provide an update on coronavirus.

The following announcements were made:

  • Preble County dropped from Red Level 3 under the Health Advisory System to Orange Level 2. Montgomery, Mercer and Butler counties remain at Red Level 3.
  • The state released the new school dashboard, which includes the number of cases at local schools broken down by county. The dashboard is part of a health order signed by the Health Director, requiring districts to report COVID-19 cases to the Ohio Department of Health. Here’s how some local districts are doing when it comes to the virus.
  • Another new dashboard focused on COVID-19 and children. The dashboard includes information about cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. It was created in consultation with the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association.
  • Using the 7-day rolling average for testing, the state has dropped from 4.4% test positivity rate to 3.4% test positivity.
  • The state’s newly established wastewater testing program has detected a rise in COVID-19 gene fragments at a Dayton wastewater plant.
  • Halloween health guidance is expected to be released tomorrow, DeWine said. The guidance will likely address haunted houses, hayrides and also trick-or-treat. DeWine said it will be up to local communities to decide on whether to hold trick-or-treat.
  • Ohio has begun distributing the extra $300 per week for those receiving unemployment this week, according to DeWine. That money will be retroactive to Aug. 1. The money is coming as a result of the Executive Order that was signed by President Donald Trump in early August.
  • DeWine said there is no reason Ohio Stadium could not have a similar plan to the Bengals/Browns, where 6,000 fans are permitted to attend games. DeWine however said the decision first must come from the Big Ten to allow fans. If the conference allows fans, DeWine said he’d work with Ohio State on a variance to allow fans.

Things you need to know today, Thursday:

LATEST STATE DATA: As of Thursday afternoon, there have been at least 141,585 confirmed or probable cases in the state, 4,580 deaths, and 14,625 hospitalizations, according to the Ohio Department of Health. 119,690 people are presumed to have recovered from the virus in the state.

Ohio has an estimated population of approximately 11.7 million, census records show.

There have been 2,710,749 people tested for the coronavirus in Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Health.

A total of 15,186 health care workers have tested positive which is about 11 percent of the cases.