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Governor's Office COVID-19 Update | February 18, 2021

Below are the updates from Governor DeWine’s February 18, 2021 press conference. The next press conference is currently scheduled for Monday, February 22nd at 2:00 PM.





Governor's Office COVID-19 Update | February 18, 2021




Below are the updates from Governor DeWine’s press conference. The next press conference is currently scheduled for Monday, February 22nd at 2:00 PM.

Here’s the news from yesterday:


  • Ohio’s COVID-19 case data is below:
    • 816,057 confirmed cases
    • 131,332 probable cases
    • 947,389 total cases
    • 49,061 hospitalizations
    • 14,132 confirmed deaths
    • 2,479 probable deaths
    • 16,611 total deaths
    • 7,002 ICU admissions
    • More data is available on the COVID-19 Dashboard HERE.



  • As a result of continued bad weather, vaccine shipments in Ohio and across the country continue to be delayed.
    • Ohioans with vaccine appointments this week should confirm that their appointment has not been canceled before leaving home.


  • Because of these weather delays, it is expected that providers will give vaccinations over the weekend as shipments arrive.



  • This morning, Ohio launched its COVID-19 Vaccine Maintenance Program for nursing homes and assisted living facilities.
    • Each month, facilities can host a vaccine clinic for residents and staff if there is the need for vaccinations.
    • The program ensures that vaccinations in long-term care facilities continue for new residents and staff or current residents and staff who have now decided to be vaccinated.



  • Governor DeWine announced that he has assembled a team of doctors and nurses to develop a plan for safe nursing home visitation.
    • Members of the team are experts in infectious disease control, skilled nursing, and other types of long-term care settings.
  • Ohio's existing visitation order does allow compassionate care visits.
    • Examples of compassionate care situations could include:
      • A resident who was living with their family before recently being admitted to a home, is struggling with the change in environment and lack of physical family support.
      • A resident who needs cueing and encouragement with eating or drinking, previously provided by family or caregiver(s), is experiencing weight loss or dehydration.
      • A resident, who used to talk and interact with others, is experiencing emotional distress, seldom speaking, or crying more frequently.
  • The Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman is available to assist citizens with questions about compassionate care visits. The office can be reached at [email protected] or 1-800-282-1206.



  • This week, vaccine eligibility opened up to Ohioans born with the medical conditions outlined HERE, or those who were diagnosed in early childhood whose conditions continued into adulthood.


  • Following anecdotal reports of individuals with these conditions being denied vaccination appointments, particularly those with cystic fibrosis, Governor DeWine stressed that vaccine providers should vaccinate those of any age with any of the following conditions.



  • Governor DeWine again asked vaccine providers to collect and report accurate and complete data on vaccine administrations including race, ethnicity, age, and category of eligibility.


  • This information is critical to understanding uptake rates among specific communities or occupations and also helps inform future policy and allocation decisions.


  • The Ohio Department of Health will continue to reach out to all providers to make sure this critical information is being entered into the system.



  • Today Lt. Governor Jon Husted traveled to Richland Public Health (RPH) in Mansfield to tour their vaccine clinic and thank the staff and healthcare providers for their efforts to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine.
    • Most of the 100 Ohioans being vaccinated during the visit today were receiving their second dose.


  • To date, RPH has vaccinated 2,705 individuals (948 fully vaccinated) at their clinic that runs typically Monday-Friday.


  • During the press conference, Lt. Governor Husted had the opportunity to look on as two Richland County residents received their shot: Ms. Doris Rheinbolt received her second dose and Mansfield Mayor Tim Theaker received his first dose, respectively.



Testimony on Governor DeWine’s Transportation Budget




“As an industry, Ohio’s property and casualty insurance companies strive to work with our partners in government to promote public safety initiatives. At this time, our industry views the plight of distracted driving as one of the most significant dangers to public safety our state faces today….We now have an opportunity to implement meaningful public safety reforms to save the lives of drivers and pedestrians across this state. By banning the hand-held use of an electronic device while driving on Ohio’s roadways, we will be joining the vast majority of states across this country in putting public safety first. On behalf of the OII and our member companies, we emphatically ask that you support this proposal to reduce traffic fatalities, put more eyes on the road, and bring an end to Ohio’s battle with distracted driving. – Dean Fadel, President, Ohio Insurance Institute


“States that have taken action in passing laws to make distracted driving a primary offense have seen a reduction in traffic fatality rates. Although hands-free driving is not risk-free, it begins to break the cycle of distraction by prohibiting drivers from frequently touching electronic devices while driving. As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic and more cars travel on our roads and highways, it is widely expected that traffic fatalities due to distracted driving will increase. The Ohio Business Roundtable urges this committee to see the value of the “Hands Free” provisions in this bill and move forward with these provisions intact” Michael McLean, Vice President of Public Policy, Ohio Business Round Table


“Nationwide’s mission is to protect people, businesses and futures with extraordinary care. HB 74 and the Hands-Free Ohio provision will protect Ohio drivers from close calls, erratic driving, and even deadly crashes caused by motorists trying to operate a vehicle while looking down with a mobile device in their hand. This provision will allow drivers to only use hands-free mobile phone technology while operating a motor vehicle. The intent is to curb crashes and traffic fatalities caused by drivers distracted by their mobile devices.” – Chad Wilson, Associate Vice President, Nationwide Insurance


Attached are the slides (in PDF format) that Governor DeWine used during today’s press conference.


Ohioans can apply for unemployment benefits online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at It is also possible to file by phone at 877-644-6562 or TTY at 888- 642-8203, Monday through Friday 7AM to 7PM, Saturday 9AM to 5PM, and Sunday 9AM to 1PM. Employers with questions should email [email protected].

As always, Coronavirus.Ohio.Gov and the Department of Health hotline, 1-833-4-ASK-ODH are great resources for those who have questions.


Click on the slides below to view full size.













Upcoming Events
Blue Blaze Run and Hike | October 1, 2021 Oct 01, 2021 04:00 PM - 07:30 PM — Tecumseh Theater - 114-116 W Main St, Shawnee, OH 43782
Blue Blaze Run and Hike | October 2, 2021 Oct 02, 2021 08:00 AM - 10:30 AM — Tecumseh Theater - 114-116 W Main St, Shawnee, OH 43782
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