Ohio - COVID-19 Covered


Total Cases: 35,033 (May 31)
Tests Administered: 381,947 (May 30)
Fatalities: 2,149 (May 31)
  • Governor DeWine announced that pharmacies throughout the state will be equipped to administer tests for COVID-19. (May 28) 
  • Ohio announced the creation of Congregate Care Unified Response Teams, which will be made up of medically trained members of the national guard who will travel to nursing homes to administer tests to residents. (May 26) 
  • Ohio announced a new partnership with Thermo Fisher and ROE Dental Scientific to increase the state’s testing capacity. New tests will be prioritized to get to healthcare workers and those who are hospitalized. The second priority will be administering tests to individuals over 65 years old, those who live or work in long term care facilities, and those with underlying conditions; the third priority of testing will go to Ohioans receiving essential medical procedures. (May 4) 
  • Governor DeWine said that Ohio’s testing capacity would increase six-fold by late May. (April 24) 
  • Governor DeWine announced a “Testing Strike Team” to identify more reliable sources of testing supplies for Ohio. (April 21) 
  • Private labs Quest and LabCorp currently have no backlog of test samples in their labs and announced that they will increase their testing capacity. (April 20) 
  • Ohio has announced plans to conduct additional testing and data collection from nursing homes and assisted living communities. (April 20) 
  • Ohio has begun comprehensive testing of inmates at Marion Correctional Institution, Pickaway Correctional Institution, and Franklin Medical Center. (April 17) 
  • Ohioans will be notified of staff and residents in nursing homes that have tested positive. (April 13) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Health ordered that all Ohio hospitals that are not conducting their own testing must send test to several designated laboratories. (April 1) 
  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human services awarded more than 50 Ohio health centers $3.2 million in funding to obtain more tests, medical supplies, and add telehealth services. (March 25) 
  • Governor DeWine has stated testing is limited and is being restricted to those who are most severely ill or moderately ill with high risk of complications. (March 18) 


Essential Service Designations:

  • Governor DeWine and Lieutenant Governor Husted reported that grocery stores, pharmacies, and banks would remain open. (March 16   

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • Governor DeWine announced the Stay Safe Ohio order, which provides additional details about the safety measures and processes for reopening manufacturing companies and offices on May 4 and retails establishments on May 12. Businesses are strongly encouraged to allow as many workers as possible to continue teleworking. (May 1) 
  • Governor DeWine announced plans to begin lifting state COVID restrictions on May 1. Manufacturers and offices can resume work on May 4 and retailers can resume business on May 12. (April 27) 
  • Lieutenant Governor Husted announced that 667 critical employers listed around 41,000 job openings on coronavirus.ohio.gov/jobsearch. (April 14) 
  • Governor DeWine recommended that everyone should wear cloth masks while in public. (April 4) 
  • Lieutenant Governor Husted announced the launch of a website to match essential businesses with workers during the pandemic. (April 2) 
  • Governor DeWine ordered stores to establish a limit for the number of people than can be inside at a time. (April 2) 
  • The State of Ohio established the Ohio Manufacturing Alliance to Fight COVID-19. The coalition is a public-private partnership meant to provide healthcare workers with personal protective equipment. (April 1) 
  • Governor DeWine announced an expanded data dashboard that displays most recent ODOH data regarding cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. (March 26) 
  • The Director of Ohio’s Department of Health ordered the closure of all older adulty day care services and senior centers. (March 24) 
  • The Director of the Ohio Department of Health ordered that all facilities providing childcare services are closed unless they have a Temporary Pandemic Child Care License. (March 24) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Health ordered the closure of all indoor family entertainment businesses and venues. (March 21) 
  • Governor DeWine ordered that all adult day support services offered for more than ten people in one setting are temporarily stopped. (March 21)  
  • Ohio’s Department of Health issued an order for the management of non-essential surgeries and procedures throughout Ohio. (March 21)   
  • Governor DeWine ordered that senior centers and senior daycare centers be closed, however lunches offered by the centers will now be delivered to patrons. (March 20 
  • Governor DeWine announced the closure of all salons, spas, tattoo parlors, and nearly all Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicle offices. (March 18 
  • Governor DeWine ordered the closure of bowling alleys, movie theaters, indoor water parks, indoor trampoline parks, fitness centers, gyms, and recreation centers. (March 16)  

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation board of directors approved to send up to $1.6 billion to Ohio employers, and 170,000 checks will be issued in the coming days. (April 21) 
  • JobsOhio, Peoples Bank, First Federal Bank and Home Savings Bank announced a partnership to help small businesses to maintain operations and payroll during the pandemic through a loan program. (April 21) 
  • The Ohio Department of Agriculture waived the requirement for local governments to match the Agricultural Society Facilities Grant Program, which allows fairs to apply for a $50,000 grant from the state government. (April 21) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that Ohio is part of a regional coalition of states including Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Indiana and Kentucky that will be coordinating the reopening of their economies starting on May 1. (April 16) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that the Ohio Plan to reopen the economy will be slow and incremental, and dependent on widespread testing. (April 14) 
  • Governor DeWine allocated $13,285,000 in additional funds to the Temporary Assistance for Families in Need (TANF) program, along with up to $4,970,000 in additional funds to the Ohio Association of Food Banks and up to an additional $1,000,000 in funds to the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio. (April 10) 
  • Governor DeWine issued an executive order to expand Ohioans telehealth access to counselors, social workers, and marriage and family counselors. (April 4) 
  • Broadband Ohio is collaborating with Wi-Fi providers to find public locations for individuals that may not have internet access at home. (April 4) 
  • Governor DeWine announced Ohio’s Economic Advisory Board to aid the state going forward. (April 2) 
  • Ohiothe USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service, and groceries stores are coordinating to offer a “click and collect” option for groceries. This program will allow individuals on SNAP benefits to shop online, pick up their groceries and use their EBT cards without entering a grocery store. (April 1)   
  • The White House approved Ohio’s disaster declaration, which will provide federal funding to the state and its local governments. (March 31) 
  • Ohio EPA issued an order stipulating that no water system will be permitted to shut off an Ohioan’s water service as a result of failure to pay. (March 31) 
  • Ohio Department of Health Director Acton ordered a weekly online reporting of ventilators, CPAP, and BiPAP machines from any group within the supply chain. (March 31) 
  • Ohio inmates have begun making gowns, cough masks, hand sanitizer, and face shields. (March 31) 
  • Governor DeWine established a “Homelessness Team” to help those who rely on homeless shelters, domestic shelters, group homes, and recovery housing. (March 30) 
  • Governor DeWine called on the FDA to issue an emergency waiver for the use of a new technology, developed by Batellethat could sterilize up to 160,000 used personal protective face masks per day in Ohio. (March 28) 
  • Governor DeWine and Lieutenant Governor Husted have expressed “deep disappointment” with the FDA’s decision to limit the use of Batelle’s new technology to sterilize only 10,000 surgical masks per day in Ohio, despite the fact the technology could sterilize up to 160,000 masks per day in Ohio alone. (March 29) 
  • On March 27, Governor DeWine signed HB 197 which provided aid and relief to Ohioans as a result of the pandemic. This bill waives state testing requirements for school children, extends the state income tax deadline as well as the absentee voting deadline, and provides financial aid for small businesses. (March 27) 
  • A bill passed by the Ohio legislature allows courts to postpone eviction hearings when needed, but courts can still take eviction action in an emergency situation. (March 27) 
  • Governor DeWine and Ohio Senate President Obhof announced their agreement to postpone the Governor’s State of the State Address to a later date. (March 26) 
  • Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost and 33 other state attorneys general called for companies to take a tougher stance on price-gouging during the pandemic. (March 26) 
  • Governor DeWine praised the General Assembly’s passage of H.B. 197, which would extend mail-in voting for the Ohio primary election, provide relief to workers impacted by COVID-19, and ensure continuity of government. DeWine stated that he would be signing the bill soon. (March 25) 
  • Governor DeWine activated the Ohio National Guard to support food pantries that are low on staff(March 20) 
  • Governor DeWine signed an executive order to expand telehealth options for Ohio Medicaid recipients. (March 19) 
  • Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted reported that the governor would be signing an executive order to alter Ohio’s unemployment law and state agencpolicy so workers have access to unemployment benefits. (March 15) 

Business Support & Resources:

  • Governor DeWine announced the creation of a Minority Task Force in order to help combat the COVID-19 virus that is disproportionately affecting minority communities. (April 20) 
  • Governor DeWine asked the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation to give up to $1.6 billion to Ohio employers to help ease the economic impact of COVID-19 on Ohio’s economy and business community. (April 8) 
  • Ohio has opened the Office of Small Business relief, which will serve as the state’s agency for administrating federal recovery funds. (April 7) 
  • Governor DeWine issued an executive order requiring landlords to suspend rent payments and evictions for at least 90 days for small businesses. (April 1) 
  • JobsOhio, a private nonprofit, has been directed by Governor DeWine to collaborate on economic assistance. The organization announced a $2 million growth fund loan to Appalachian Growth Capital to provide funding assistance for businesses in the Ohio Appalachian region. (March 31) 
  • Governor DeWine announced the establishment of a business advisory group. (March 31) 
  • The State of Ohio launched a website to support small business which allows Ohioans to shop online and take virtual tours of famous sites around Ohio. (March 27) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that any childcare centers operating must give priority to front line workers. (March 23) 
  • Governor DeWine announced new guidelines for childcare centers operating under the Temporary Pandemic Child Care license. (March 22) 
  • Governor DeWine announced a new website with resources for businesses and workers. (March 22) 
  • Ohio’s Bureau of Worker’s Compensation is deferring insurance premium installment payments initially due March, April, and May to June 1. (March 21) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Transportation announced it is modifying the process for haulers carrying essential goods and will provide a permit. (March 21)  
  • Governor DeWine announced that the US Small Business Administration approved his request to allow small businesses and nonprofits in Ohio to apply for low-interest, long term loans up to $2 million, through the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. (March 19)  
  • Governor DeWine issued an executive order to issue a new temporary license for Temporary Pandemic Child Care to provide childcare services to children of parents employed to provide health, safety, and other essential services. (March 17) 
  • The Ohio Department of Commerce began offering a one-time liquor buyback option to support bars and restaurants. (March 15) 


Shelter-In-Place Orders:

  • Beginning May 26, miniature golf, batting cages, and bowling alleys can reopen if they meet safety protocols. Skills training for sports can also resume on May 26, although tournaments and games are still prohibited. Catering and banquet halls can reopen for crowds of 300 people or less starting June 1. (May 21) 
  • Governor DeWine signed the Camp Safe Ohio order providing campgrounds with safety procedures for resuming operations, including social distancing and sanitizing guidelines. (May 20) 
  • Dine-in services in bars and restaurants are scheduled to resume on May 21. Governor DeWine announced that he is assembling a team to perform safety compliance checks in crowded restaurants. Businesses found to be violating safety guidelines will receive citations and may lose their liquor licenses. The team may also take criminal action against business owners who don’t follow the order, which requires patrons be seated six feet apart. (May 18) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that childcare facilities can reopen with restrictions and enhanced cleaning procedures on May 31. Campgrounds will reopen on May 21, horse racing will resume without spectators on May 22, and gyms, swimming pools, low contact sports, and BMV deputy registrars will reopen on May 26. (May 14) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that massage therapy, acupuncture, cosmetic therapy, tattoo parlors and body piercing services will be permitted to reopen on May 15, with the implementation of proper safety measures. (May 12) 
  • Governor DeWine announced the next phase of the Responsible RestartOhio plan which involves the reopening of bars and restaurants. Outdoor dining will resume at Ohio restaurants on May 15, and dine-in service will resume on May 21. Personal care services, such as salons, will reopen on May 15. All establishments must follow a set of safety and hygiene practices. (May 7) 
  • Governor DeWine announced details of the Responsible RestartOhio plan, including plans to reopen construction and manufacturing companies on May 4 and retail shops on May 12. (April 27) 
  • Governor DeWine announced plans to begin lifting state COVID-19 restrictions on May 1. Manufacturers and offices can resume work on May 4 and retailers can resume business on May 12. (April 27) 
  • Governor DeWine said the “Stay at Home” order would stay in place after restrictions begin being lifted on May 1, but that adjustments would be made to accommodate affected businesses. (April 27) 
  • Governor DeWine issued a “Stay at Home” order that will begin March 23 at 11:59 p.m. requiring all Ohioans to stay in their homes and the closure of all nonessential businesses. (March 22) 


  • While the State of Ohio has not issued a curfew, the mayor for the city of Whitehall issued a curfew for the hours of 12am to 6am. (March 23)

Social-Distancing Guidelines

  • Governor DeWine announced the new Ohioans Protecting Ohioans order, which replaces the Stay Safe Ohio order. The new order no longer requires all Ohioans to stay home, but instead strongly encourages high risk citizens to stay home. The order does not change mass gathering restrictions, which are capped at 10 people or less. The new plan also lifts travel restrictions, which previously required individuals to self-quarantine if travelling to or from Ohio from out of state. (May 19) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that while Ohio will not require customers of retail establishments to wear face coverings, they will be strongly encouraged. (April 28) 
  • The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction Director Annette Chambers-Smith recommended to the Correctional Institution Inspection Committee that inmates who were scheduled to be released in the next 90 days be released early to allow for increased social distancing. (April 7) 
  • Major grocery chains Kroger and Giant Eagle are going to be limiting the number of people permitted in their stores to 50%, the recommended capacity according to building codes. (April 7) 
  • Governor DeWine’s extended Stay at Home Order called for limiting wedding receptions to ten peoplecampgrounds, public swimming poolschildren’s day camps, and youth and adult sports are all closed or suspended. (April 6) 
  • Governor DeWine has asked that anyone traveling from another state to Ohio self-quarantine for 14 days. (April 2) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Health issued a director’s order to prohibit mass gatherings of fifty or more personsAdditionally, the department has strongly recommended avoiding “unnecessary non-family social gatherings” of more than 10 people. (March 17) 
  • Governor DeWine also issued an executive order closing all polling locations for the state’s election on March 17. (March 16)  
  • Governor DeWine banned visitors at county jails and corrections centers. (March 14) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Health also issued an order limiting number of visitors to one person per resident for individuals in nursing homes and assisted living. (March 11) 

Delivery Services:

  • Breweries can now sell beer and wine without the purchase of food, and establishments can sell and deliver liquor for off-premises consumption. Patrons can have no more than two drinks per meal. (April 7) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Health issued a Director’s order to close all Ohio bars and restaurants to in-house patrons effective beginning 9pm on March 15thRestaurants with take-out and delivery options will be able to continue offering those services. (March 15) 



  • For Class of 2020 graduation ceremonies, the state is recommending virtual graduation ceremonies, drive-in ceremonies, or outdoor ceremonies with 10 people or less who are socially distanced. (April 29) 
  • Ohio schools will remain closed through the end of the school year. (April 20) 
  • Ohio’s Department of Education released a Remote Learning Resource guide to aid children. (April 1) 
  • Governor DeWine has stated that its possible schools will remain closed for the rest of the year. (March 15)   

State Higher Education:

  • For Class of 2020 graduation ceremonies, the state is recommending virtual graduation ceremonies, drive-in ceremonies, or outdoor ceremonies with 10 people or less who are socially distanced. (April 29) 
  • State police are going to begin issuing warning letters to students holding parties near the Ohio State campus. (April 7) 
  • Following Ohio State University’s announcement that it would cancel in person classes until at least March 30, Governor DeWine called for all Ohio colleges and universities to move all classes online or for instruction to be done remotely. (March 10)  

Produced by Marathon Strategies, an independent PR firm that delivers intelligent communications and research solutions. For information, email Phil Singer at COVID-19@marathonstrategies.com