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Governor DeWine Press Conference Summary for Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Below are the updates from yesterday’s press conference with Governor DeWine, Lt. Governor Husted, and Dr. Acton. Today’s press conference is scheduled for 2:00 PM.  You can watch this on the Ohio Channel, Ohio Public TV (PBS stations), and other Columbus-based outlets.   

Here’s the news from Wednesday: 

  • In Ohio there are 5,148 confirmed cases, 472 ICU admissions, 1,495 hospitalizations, and 193 deaths as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. More data is available on the COVID-19 Dashboard HERE.  
  • Governor DeWine announced today that a member of Ohio's state-employee family, Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction Officer John Dawson, died after testing positive for COVID-19 on March 30, 2020. Officer Dawson, 55, of Mansfield, had been a corrections officer at the Marion Correctional Institution since 1996. He most recently worked in the control center handing out equipment to staff. Governor DeWine and the administration offer their sincerest condolences to the Dawson family.  
  • Governor DeWine and the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) proposed giving $1.6 billion in dividends to Ohio employers this spring to ease the economic impact of COVID-19. If approved by the BWC’s board, $1.4 billion will go to private employers, and $200 million will be directed to local governments.  More information is attached as well as a statement of support from the National Federation of Independent Businesses-Ohio Chapter. Click HERE for the BWC FAQ document.  
  • The personal protective equipment (PPE) shortage in Ohio remains severe. Governor DeWine made a plea to healthcare workers using N95 masks to send them to Battelle which can sterilize up to 160,000 masks each day, making them reusable up to 20 times. Hospitals should contact to arrange for mask sterilization.  
  • Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), awarded more than $1.3 billion to 1,387 health centers as a response to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Health centers may use the awards to help communities across the country detect coronavirus; prevent, diagnose, and treat COVID-19; and maintain or increase health capacity and staffing levels to address this public health emergency. Ohio received $40,732,260 to support 51 health centers. You can find a list of award recipients HERE 
  • Since Ohio's stay at home order began on March 22nd, Ohio has seen approximately a 50-percent drop in child abuse and neglect cases because those who typically report suspicions of abuse - such as teachers, coaches, child care providers, and school counselors and nurses - aren’t seeing children every day. Please report any suspected abuse or neglect by calling 855-OH-CHILD.  
  • 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 7 am to 7 pm and 9 am to 1 pm on Saturdays. Employers with questions should email 

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

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