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COVID-19 Update: Governor Announces BMW Views and More

May 4, 2020

This afternoon, Governor Mike DeWine, Lt. Governor Jon Husted and ODH Director Dr. Amy Acton provided an update on where things stand related to COVID-19 on May 4, 2020. Currently, there are 20,474 cases and 19,609 confirmed cases of COVID-19 spanning 88 counties. There have been 1,056 fatalities, 3,809 hospitalizations and 1,090 ICU admissions. The age range is less than 1 to 106 with a median age of 51. Forty-four percent are female while 56 percent are male. Sixteen percent of those impacted are healthcare workers. The coronavirus dashboard is now showing 21-day trends as opposed to five-day trends for cases, death, hospitalizations and ICU admissions. Trend reporting is important as we re-open Ohio.

Prior to making any announcements, the governor started the press conference with a moment of silence for the 50th anniversary of the tragic events at Kent State University.

In the next several days, we can expect a protocol and re-open date for dine-in restaurants. The workgroup for restaurants consists of representatives from smaller establishments to bigger chains.

Retail opens May 12, but retail establishments can do curbside pick ups and appointments right now.

The governor stated that he normally doesn’t comment on demonstrators and he has great respect for their right to demonstrate. He said he is fair game, but it is not fair game to disrespect the news media. He says to come after him instead of going after those who are demonstrating the First Amendment right and informing the public. It is also not fair game to bother Acton's family. He said he is the one who sets the policy and the one elected to office, so demonstrate against him.

The state is nearing 22,000 COVID-19 tests per day. Increased testing does not replace infection control measures such as social distancing and wearing a mask. Identification will help stop the spread of the infection throughout a facility or the community. While testing is expanded, it is not unlimited.

Currently, only 3.4 percent of Ohio's residents have been tested. The testing priorities are, first, Ohioans with symptoms who are hospitalized or healthcare workers; second: Ohioans with symptoms who are residents of congregate living settings, first responders/public health workers/critical infrastructure workers, 65 and older and living with underlying conditions. Also, Ohioans without symptoms who are residents or staff exposed to an outbreak in a congregate living settings and other Ohioans who are designated by public health officials to evaluate/manage community outbreaks. The third set are Ohioans with and without symptoms who are receiving essential surgeries/procedures or receiving other medically necessary procedures not requiring an overnight stay/inpatient hospital admission.

There are 5 Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMVs) open across the state to meet special needs. The opening of the rest won’t happen until late May. The state is working on the plan for safety measures and the re-hiring of staff. The state also is working on the ‘get inline, online’ system, where people can check-in online to allow for an orderly process for re-opening. There still are suspended expiration dates until the BMVs are re-opened.

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