Ohio eases up on surgery limits


Mercy Health joins plasma program

Staff and wire report



This sign inside a residence in St. Paris shows gratitude for local and Ohio workers sacrificing their safety to make sure others have what they need during this pandemic.

This sign inside a residence in St. Paris shows gratitude for local and Ohio workers sacrificing their safety to make sure others have what they need during this pandemic.


Steve Stout | Urbana Daily Citizen

Champaign County’s reported COVID-19 cases remained at 7, with one reported death, as of Wednesday morning, county Health Commissioner Gabe Jones said in a Wednesday briefing. He noted that an error a few days ago on the Ohio Department of Health website listed Champaign County as having eight cases. That error has been corrected.

There have also been 5 recoveries and 2 hospitalizations.

Of the county’s seven reported cases, the average age is 51 and the age range is 22 to 81, Jones said. He added that while more men than women in the state are reported to have this coronavirus, the reverse is true in Champaign County, with men accounting for 42 percent of the cases.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine on Wednesday announced an easing up on the prohibition of elective surgeries during the coronavirus pandemic.

DeWine said that doctors can now review postponed procedures and surgeries with patients in terms of their current health situation and quality of life, after which doctors and patients can make a joint decision about whether to proceed.

DeWine said patients must be informed of the risk of contracting COVID-19, and must also be told of the impact of contracting the illness during the post-operative recovery process.

“I’ve heard stories that some surgeries that we had no intention of stopping have been postponed,” DeWine said. “That has concerned me a great deal, so we are starting back one step at a time.”

Mercy Health – Springfield Joins Convalescent Plasma Expanded Access Program for COVID-19

Mercy Health – Springfield announced on Wednesday it has joined the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) national Expanded Access Program (EAP) for Convalescent Plasma as a treatment protocol for COVID-19.

Convalescent plasma is collected from individuals who have recovered from the virus, and it is administered to the patients with COVID-19 who are at high risk of progression to a severe or life-threatening stage of the disease. Convalescent plasma has been safely collected and used at various times over the past century to treat polio, measles, hepatitis B, influenza, Ebola and other pathogens.

The FDA designated the Mayo Clinic as the lead institution for the program. Due to the unprecedented need for an enhanced response to the pandemic, the expanded access to the program includes registered health care providers across the country.

“In our ongoing effort to care for our communities, Mercy Health is facilitating access to investigational convalescent plasma through participation in the National Expanded Access Treatment Protocol,” said Adam Groshans, President, Mercy Health – Springfield. “We have established a network of participating blood suppliers that will work at the local level to supply hospitals with convalescent plasma. The key to the success of this program is the donor population.”

Qualifying donors are people who have had COVID-19 and are symptom-free for 28 days or longer. They can donate blood through the Community Blood Center (givingblood.org/dayton-area-covid-19-convalescent-plasma-(ccp)-program/about-covid-19-convalescent-plasma-(ccp).aspx#i_think_im_eligible) or they can donate at other participating blood donation centers found on Mercy Health’s website.

Before donated blood can be used, it is tested for safety. Then it goes through a process to separate the blood cells so that all that is left is the plasma with the antibodies. A single plasma donation has the potential to help up to four patients with COVID-19.

Investigative convalescent plasma used within the guidelines of the EAP is different from antibody testing, which is also referred to as serologic testing for COVID-19. While both programs use antibodies found in a person’s blood, investigative convalescent plasma is a treatment for patients with COVID-19 who are at high risk of progression to a severe or life-threatening stage of the disease. In comparison, serologic testing is a new laboratory blood test developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to assist with efforts to determine how much of the U.S. population has been exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19.

For more information, and to find a list of local blood donation centers participating in the expanded access investigative convalescent plasma program, visit mercy.com or call 888-700-9011.

Food accessibility, mental health concerns

In Urbana, the Caring Kitchen and the Wherehouse food pantries are well-stocked with food, according to what Jeanne Bowman, the county Health District’s emergency preparedness coordinator, learned from those in charge of the pantries. She said Marilyn Cohn, Caring Kitchen’s executive director, said there also is an adequate number of people to deliver food if those in need can’t go to the pantry.

Bowman said about 13 people are living at the Caring Kitchen, in lockdown because of COVID-19 restrictions and practicing social distancing.

She said that rather than food, Cohn’s main concern now is that people get assistance for mental health, domestic abuse and alcohol issues.

Mental health resources are available locally. The Mental Health Board Crisis Hotline is 1-800-224-0422 or 937-376-8701 or TEXT Ohio Crisis Textline : text “4HOPE” to 741741

The Champaign Health District call center is open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays: 937-653-0110. Questions also can be emailed to health@champaignhd.com

Learn about public orders, COVID-19 checklists, updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and much more at the Ohio Department of Health website coronavirus.ohio.gov

Information also can be obtained at 1-833-4-ASK-ODH, staffed 9 a.m.-8 p.m. daily by Ohio Department of Health personnel.

Other coronavirus-related developments in Ohio on Wednesday:

PRISONS

State inmates continue to account for more than one in four positive tests statewide thanks to facility-wide testing at three prisons. More than 2,000 inmates at Marion Correctional Institution out of about 2,500 have tested positive to date, while more than 1,500 of about 2,000 have tested positive at Pickaway Correctional Institution.

Inmates complain they aren’t being told their test results and have limited masks and supplies of soap. Prison guards, who are also seeing high infection rates, say they’re being forced to return to work quickly after recovery and are working 16-hour shifts because of the short staffing.

DeWine announced the first positive test of a youth in the state juvenile detention system.

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CASES

More than 14,000 cases of the virus have been reported statewide, including 610 deaths and 2,800 hospitalizations, according to figures released Wednesday.

For most people, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms that clear up within weeks. Older adults and people with existing health problems are at higher risk of more severe illness, including pneumonia, or death.

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ECONOMY

Multiple business owners have told the legislative House 2020 Economic Recovery Task Force that restrictions on business operations should be lifted as soon as possible, Gongwer News Service reported. A phased reopening will limit employees’ willingness to return if their wages won’t match unemployment, business owners say.

University Hospitals in Cleveland announced it’s reducing hours and pay by 20% for about 4,100 caregivers not directly involved in patient care because of the financial impact of the pandemic as elective surgeries have been prohibited. The hospital system said that executives, directors, nonclinical managers, department chairs and division chiefs will have their pay reduced while continuing to work regular schedules.

Ohio has seen a 172% increase in the number of SNAP, or food stamp, applications filed by Ohioans this year compared to last year, said Kimberly Hall, director of the Department of Job and Family Services. That’s a jump from 10,784 during the second week of April 2019 compared to 29,334 this year.

Ohio Humanities announced it’s providing $750,000 in emergency federal relief grants to historical societies, museums and other cultural organizations affected by the pandemic.

Ohio Agriculture Director Dorothy Pelanda on Tuesday waived a required $50,000 local match for county fairs to obtain $50,000 in state grants for facility and grounds improvements.

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THE NEW NORMAL

The Dayton air show, scheduled for June 27-28, became the state’s latest high-profile event to cancel, citing the pandemic, the Dayton Daily News reported.

This sign inside a residence in St. Paris shows gratitude for local and Ohio workers sacrificing their safety to make sure others have what they need during this pandemic.
https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2020/04/web1_sign2.jpgThis sign inside a residence in St. Paris shows gratitude for local and Ohio workers sacrificing their safety to make sure others have what they need during this pandemic. Steve Stout | Urbana Daily Citizen

https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2020/04/web1_togetherohio-7.jpgSteve Stout | Urbana Daily Citizen

https://www.urbanacitizen.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/36/2020/04/web1_4.22_corona.jpgGraphics from Gov. Mike DeWine
Mercy Health joins plasma program

Staff and wire report