Coronavirus in Ohio Friday update: DeWine outlines plan for initial vaccine distribution

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February 07 2021 06:00 pm

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Gov. Mike DeWine laid out plans Friday afternoon for distributing the coronavirus vaccine in Ohio starting later in December.

As of Dec. 4, a total of 456,963 (+10,114) cases have been reported in Ohio since the pandemic began, leading to 6,882 (+129) deaths and 28,673 (+392) hospitalizations.

DeWine said the vaccine will first be distributed to people in these groups:

  • Health-care workers or personnel involved in the care of COVID-19 patients
  • EMS responders
  • Vulnerable individuals who live in close proximity and those who care for them, such as the staff and residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities

DeWine said that a total of 659,475 vaccines, once approved, will come in shipments on or around Dec. 15 and 22 from manufacturers Pfizer and Moderna. That accounts for the first dose of the two-stage vaccines, with additional shipments expected in January.

Dr. Bruce Vanderhoff, chief medical officer of the Ohio Department of Health, explained new quarantine guidelines announced by the state. They mirror updated guidelines recently released by the CDC. The quarantine period had been 14 days since the pandemic began, but with new research, Vanderhoff said there are now two options, both shorter.

First is for 10 days of experiencing no symptoms and without taking a COVID-19 test. Second is for seven days of experiencing no symptoms and with a negative test.

Vanderhoff said a person should quarantine after close contact with a person known to have the disease.

Franklin County dropped from purple to red on the latest state public health advisory map, released Thursday. It had been purple, the highest alert level, for two weeks. Eight counties are now purple: Lake, Lorain, Medina, Summit, Portage, Stark, Richland and Montgomery.

In Central Ohio, Delaware, Licking, Fairfield, Pickaway, Madison and Union counties are all red, or level three. Eight counties in the state are at level 2, or orange, and no counties are at level 1.

The state continues to post a message on the coronavirus dashboard stating that data is incomplete with thousands of reports pending review due to a surge in testing across the state.

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