Coronavirus Pandemic: Ohio receives approval for extra $300 payment for unemployment

Coronavirus Pandemic: What you need to know Thursday

Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted made several announcements during this afternoon’s briefing providing an update on coronavirus in the state.

The following announcements have been made:

  • DeWine said the state is seeing a slight increase in cases this week, but added that it is not surprising as schools begin to return to classes.
  • Darke County is the fourth ranked county in the state for occurence of coronavirus the last two weeks, that’s a drop from it being at the top of the state this week.
  • Montgomery County has returned to Level 3 Red after a week at Level 2 Orange. Clark County dropped from Level 3 Red to Level 2 Orange. Mercer and Preble County remain at Level 3 Red.
  • Montgomery County has added over 500 cases in the last week, according to DeWine.
  • The state had six counties at the Level 3 Red category, which is the lowest level since the state launched the system.
  • DeWine addressed testing at assisted living facilities and the baseline saliva testing that started last week. “We’ve paused this method of specimen collection temporarily as we conduct controlled validation testing to determine why there have been irregularities,” DeWine said.
  • A new order will be issued requiring school districts to establish a reporting mechanism for parents to report coronavirus cases. After learning of a student or staff member who tested positive, K-12 schools must report that case to the local health department as quickly as possible. DeWine said schools will have to report cases to the public either by a press release or on the district’s website. Schools also are being asked to notify parents and guardians in writing with as much information about the case as possible, without releasing protected health information.
  • Schools also are being asked to notify parents and guardians in writing with as much information about the case as possible, without releasing protected health information. “Prompt reporting will help prevent potential further spread among students and staff,” DeWine said. “Just because there is a case at a school, it doesn’t mean the school has done anything wrong. The spread you see in the community will be reflected in the schools.”
  • Superintendent Paula Crew from Tecumseh Local Schools in Clark County joined today’s press conference and discussed Tecumseh’s remote learning plan. The district is doing remote learning for at least the first nine weeks of the school year. She said some special-needs students are being brought in on buses one-at-a-time to get specialized in-person instruction. Additional masks have been provided to the district to assist with personal protection of people that do need to be in district buildings.
  • Lt. Gov. Jon Husted announced two modifications to the sports order that will help with logistics for some school districts. Husted said participants will be allowed to participate in one contest per day, which will allow some players to compete in an event on a Friday night and then again on a Saturday morning. Previously, participants were only allowed to compete in one competition in a 24-hour period.
  • Ohio has received approval from FEMA to provide an additional $300 per week for people receiving unemployment benefits due to COVID-19. Payments will be retroactive to Aug. 1 and the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services will be providing additional information on how to apply as Ohio implements the new assistance program. DeWine has previously said the state hopes to begin paying out the new payments in mid-to-late September.
  • DeWine said both the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns had submitted “good plans” to the state, but he’s not ready to approve them as the state wants to see what happens as schools reopen. DeWine also touched on the topic of fans at professional football games. “Not there yet,” DeWine said. “It is certainly a possibility.”

Things you need to know today, Thursday:

LATEST STATE DATA: As of Thursday afternoon, there have been at least 118,828 confirmed or probable cases in the state, 4,076 deaths, and 13,150 hospitalizations, according to the Ohio Department of Health. 99,035 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 2,109,950 people tested for the coronavirus in Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Health.

A total of 13,313 health care workers have tested positive which is about 11 percent of the cases.