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Tuesday Update: Ohio To Increase Testing In Nursing Homes And Developmental Centers

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine speaks at a news conference at the statehouse in Columbus, Ohio, Tuesday, March 3, 2020, to announce impacts on the Arnold Sports Festival of the coronavirus. DeWine and organizers of the annual Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus announced Tuesday that only athletes will be allowed at most of the event scheduled to begin Thursday because of the threat posed by the new coronavirus. (AP Photo/Julie Carr Smyth)

Update On Cases

The Ohio Department of Health’s latest report shows all major metric categories are below the 21 day average. Ohio has 33,006 total coronavirus cases and 2,002 total deaths. 5,579 Ohioans have been hospitalized from COVID-19; 1,450 have been admitted into the intensive care unit.

More than 337,000 COVID-19 tests have been administered in Ohio, including 6,800+ in the past day. Ohio has a positive test rate of around 9.7%. Dr. Amy Acton with the state Department of Health says the low daily testing numbers are due to slow activity during the holiday weekend.

Today’s Re-Openings

Today, gyms, community and or club pools and non-contact sports leagues could reopen in Ohio. All high school sports were also able to begin their summer training programs at school facilities, after receiving district approval. Contact sports have still not been approved for competition.

Testing In Nursing Homes & Developmental Centers

Beginning this week, newly organized Congregate Care Unified Response Teams, which will include medically-trained members of the Ohio National Guard will begin testing residents and staff within nursing homes. Nearly 75% of the deaths in the state of Ohio are linked to nursing homes. Governor DeWine says there will be two parallel paths for testing.

  1. All staff in all Ohio nursing facilities will be tested. DeWine says this will help nursing home administrators understand the status of the virus in their facilities and will help isolate the virus and help keep it from infecting their community.
  2. Testing will occur in facilities where residents or workers have confirmed or assumed positive cases. Testing will be conducted on all staff, and the testing of residents will be based on a clinically-driven strategy that targets those who have likely been exposed to COVID-19.

The Governor also announced that the state will begin the testing of all residents and staff members of the state’s developmental centers.

“This is an important effort to try to limit the spread of COVID-19 in congregate care settings,” DeWine said.

Medically-trained members of the Ohio National Guard will be at Ohio’s eight developmental centers this week to test residents and their staff. By getting a clear picture of the COVID-19 situation on these facilities, DeWine says the state can help prevent the spread.


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