COVID-19 & Ohio: Higher Education, Workplace Vaccinations and More
April 1, 2021
Today, Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted provided updates on Ohio's response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
DeWine announced that the state will begin working with local colleges and universities to offer vaccination clinics on campuses across the state. These higher-education vaccination clinics will start on various campuses next week and will offer the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The goal is to offer on-campus clinics to all of Ohio's college students before the school year ends in May.
"Although young people are less likely to get sick from the coronavirus, they are significant carriers of the virus," said DeWine. "By offering one-dose clinics on campus, students who wish to be vaccinated will have a nearby, convenient location to get the vaccine with their peers."
The governor also announced Ohio will begin working with employers and other organizations to offer workplace vaccination clinics throughout the state. Beginning the week of April 12, vaccine providers can allot up to 25 percent of their vaccine allocation to be used to vaccinate their own employees or to partner with local employers, labor unions, and other organizations to vaccinate their employees at their work locations.
For the past two Thursdays, Ohio's statewide average was just under 150 cases per 100,000 population. The two-week case rate has now risen to 167.1 cases per 100,000. New cases had been relatively flat through the month of March, but cases are beginning to increase once again, which demonstrates the necessity that Ohioans choose to be vaccinated. To date, nearly 30 percent of Ohioans have received at least one dose of vaccine.
According to Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, chief medical officer at the Ohio Department of Health (ODH), variant activity continues to rise, closely mirroring what is occurring in the rest of the nation. Michigan is currently experiencing an increase in cases that is more than 3.5 times what Ohio is seeing, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this increase appears to be driven substantially by variants. Most of Ohio's rising cases numbers and variant cases are happening in the area of the state bordering Michigan.
"Ohio remains in a race against a virus that is now more contagious and right back on our heels," said Vanderhoff. "We can win this race as long as we don’t falter; as long as we press on with consistent masking and vaccination, especially in light of this week’s important and encouraging research out of the CDC confirming that the vaccines are powerful protection against COVID-19 and its variants."
DeWine also announced, as Ohio continues to receive increases in its vaccine allotment, the state will allot more doses to areas that are seeing case spikes or increases in vaccine demand.
New health data compiled by the ODH shows case increases in 56 counties over the past week, however, because there are not yet significant increases in healthcare utilization at the county level, most counties stayed at the same level this week.
Level changes include:
- Van Wert County moved from yellow to orange.
- Auglaize, Paulding and Scioto moved from red to orange.
- Carroll, Mercer, and Morgan counties moved from orange to yellow.
- Clinton County dropped from red to yellow.
Husted, in his capacity as director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation, also announced that In-demand Jobs Week will officially take place May 3 through May 7, whicH is designed to promote Ohio’s most in-demand and fastest growing industries through statewide hiring, education and training events. This year, In-demand Jobs Week will feature all of Ohio’s top jobs, including critical jobs, which focus on the health and well-being of Ohioans such as child care workers, home health aides, and firefighters.
Throughout the week, businesses, education providers, community organizations and more are encouraged to plan unique, virtual opportunities that will inspire students and job seekers to pursue a job in Ohio. From virtual tours and roundtables to virtual career-tech signing days and online job fairs, In-demand Jobs Week is an opportunity to highlight what Ohio has to offer. Organizations can visit TopJobs.Ohio.gov to add their event to the official In-demand Jobs Week map. Individuals interested in attending an event can use this map to find events near them.
Additionally, the next round of TechCred launches today and closes on April 30 at 3:00 p.m. Ohio businesses can visit TechCred.Ohio.gov to apply and help their employees earn a new tech-focused credential, at no cost. More than 1,100 Ohio businesses have used TechCred, creating the opportunity for 19,841 technology-focused credentials to be earned by Ohio employees.