COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Ohio Department of Health Director Dr. Amy Acton, and Lt. Governor Jon Husted held a 2pm briefing Friday to discuss the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus in the state.
As of Friday, there are 9,107 cases reported in the state, leading to 418 deaths. A total of 2,424 hospitalizations have been reported.
Governor DeWine started Friday’s news conference by announcing that Dr. Acton had been named the 2020 Jerrie Mock Spirit of Columbus Award winner. The award recognizes individuals who have exhibited an exemplary community spirit through their accomplishments.
“I just want to say to everyone out there thank you very, very much for this honor,” Dr. Acton said. “I don’t think you ever feel worthy. It made me wonder if ever the people you saw in that video sometimes have that feeling of, ‘I’m just living my life,’ and these sort of things just happen.”
Columbus native Jerrie Mock was the first woman to fly around the globe solo.
DeWine talked Friday about his plan to reopen businesses in the state by stating there are three conditions that must be met in order for the economic restart to begin: Public health measures and compliance must be established, people most vulnerable to the disease must be protected, and businesses operate safely with safeguards in place.
More details of the plan are expected to be announced next week, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted said.
And while things are expected to begin reopening May 1, there is one essential fact DeWine wants everyone to keep in mind: the virus is not going to go away.
“We have to assume that everyone we meet is carrying the virus,” DeWine said. “Because many people are walking around among us and don’t know they’re carrying the virus.”
DeWine then announced he’s granting seven commutations to prisoners and denying 84.
As of Thursday, 499 Ohio inmates have tested positive for COVID-19 and four have died with all four coming at the Pickaway Correctional Institution.
On Thursday, DeWine said an economic advisory board has provided information and guidelines to him that will help some businesses to reopen by May 1.