Ohio - COVID-19 Covered


Total Cases: 101,731 (August 10)
Tests Administered: 1,668,548 (January 1)
Fatalities: 3,673 (August 10)
  • Governor DeWine announced that pharmacies throughout the state will be equipped to administer tests for COVID-19. (May 28) 
  • A full list of active community health and testing centers in Ohio can he found here 


Essential Service Designations:

  • Ohio’s Department of Health defined essential services as healthcare and public health operations, human services operations, essential government functions, essential infrastructure, grocery stores, food and beverage manufacturing, organizations that provide charitable and social services, religious entities, media, gas stations and businesses needed for transportation, financial and insurance institutions, hardware supply stores, critical trades, mail and delivery services, educational institution, laundry services, among others. (March 22 

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • Ohio has released official reopening guidance for businesses based on sector. Details for each sector can be found here  
  • Governor DeWine ordered stores to establish a limit for the number of people than can be inside at a time. (April 2) 

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • Governor DeWine announced the approval of assistance for 15 projects set to create 1,653 new jobs and retain another 1,676 jobs statewide. Collectively, the projects are expected to result in more than $99 million in new payroll and spur more than $304 million in investments across Ohio. (July 28) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that he is awarding an additional grant of $15 million to the Coalition on Homelessness and Housing in Ohio. (July 9 
  • Governor DeWine announced continued funding for the Ohio Department of Health Ohio 2-1-1 initiative, a phone service that connects thousands of Ohioans to local non-profit and government services for healthcare, meals, housing, transportation, mental health and legal services. (June 25) 
  • Governor DeWine signed an executive order which lists several reasons as “good cause” for refusing suitable work, so that Ohioans are still eligible for unemployment insurance. These include: a medical professional recommending someone not return to work because they fall into a high risk category, the employee is sixty-five or older, among others. (June 16) 
  • Ohio will receive an $8.5 million federal Employment Recovery National Dislocated Worker Grant to reemploy workers who lost their jobs due to the pandemic. (June 11) 
  • 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) 
  • 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) 
  • The White House approved Ohio’s disaster declaration, which will provide federal funding to the state and its local governments. (March 31) 
  • 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) 
  • Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted reported that the governor would be signing an executive order to alter Ohio’s unemployment law and state agency policy so workers have access to unemployment benefits. (March 15) 


Business Support & Resources:

  • Governor DeWine announced that the Ohio Department of Commerce’s Division of Liquor Control has granted more than 300 expansion requests to bars and restaurants to allow patrons more opportunities to enjoy dinner or drinks in a safe environment. (July 2) 
  • 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) 
  • 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 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 signed Executive Order 2020-30D, which requires all liquor permit establishments that sell alcohol for on-premises consumption to end alcohol sales starting at 10PM. The order also prohibits all on-premises alcohol consumption at these same liquor permit premises between the hours of 11PM. and 5:30AMand increases the amount of “drinks-to-go” that can be sold with a meal purchase from two to three. (July 31 
  • Governor DeWine has ordered bars across the state to close at 10PM due to the spike in cases. (July 29) 
  • Governor DeWine announced Tuesday that he would heavily limit activities at county fairs while loosening COVID-19 restrictions on childcare providers come August. (July 28) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that new public health data has led the Ohio Department of Health to designate 23 counties as being in a Red Alert Level 3 Public Emergency, as defined by the Ohio Public Health Advisory System. (July 23 
  • Governor DeWine announced has announced that a statewide facial covering order has signed by Ohio Department of Health Interim Director Lance Himes. (July 23 
  • Governor DeWine announced a travel advisory for all individuals coming into Ohio from states reporting positive COVID-19 testing rates of 15 percent or higher. (July 22) 
  • Governor DeWine announced a statewide mask mandate for citizens living in all 88 Ohio counties. (July 22) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that new public health data has led the Ohio Department of Health to designate 19 counties as being in a Red Alert Level 3 Public Emergency. New counties upgraded to Red Alert Level 3 will be required to wear masks in public beginning July 17. (July 16) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that the Ohio Department of Health has designated 12 counties as being in a Red Alert Level 3 Public Emergency, as defined by the Ohio Public Health Advisory System. (July 9 
  • Governor DeWine announced that effective July 8, a new Ohio Department of Health order will mandate face coverings in public in all counties that are designated as a Red Alert Level 3 Public Health Emergency or a Purple Alert Level 4 Public Health Emergency. (July 7) 
  • Governor DeWine announced the extension of existing health orders through this week as his administration finalizes plans to help local schools safely reopen. (June 29) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that beginning July 20, 2020, nursing homes are permitted to begin outdoor visitation as long as all safety standards are met. (June 29)  
  • Governor DeWine announced a public awareness campaign that will center on a series of 15-second ads produced by the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation detailing ways in which Ohioans can take preventative safety measures and maintain social distancing as Ohio continues to reopen. (June 23) 
  • Beginning June 22, Ohio sports teams will be permitted to resume contact practices and scrimmages. (June 18) 
  • On June 19, Ohio will reopen casinos, amusement parks, and water parks. (June 5) 
  • On June 10, Movie theaters, museums and zoos can begin reopening. (June 5) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that medical procedures may resume, including dentist appointments, as long as adequate PPE is maintained. (June 2) 
  • Child care facilities are permitted to reopen as long as safety procedures are met, which will be in place from May 31 to at least July 1. (May 30) 
  • On May 26 miniature golf, batting cages, and bowling alleys can reopen. (May 21) 
  • On May 26 skills training for sports can also resume on May 26, although tournaments and games are still prohibited. (May 21) 
  • On June 1, catering and banquet halls can reopen for crowds of 300 people or less. (May 21) 
  • Governor DeWine announced the new Ohioans Protecting Ohioan’s order, which replaces the Stay Safe Ohio order. (May 19) 
  • 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 traveling to or from Ohio from out of state.  
  • On May 21, Dine-in services in bars and restaurants are scheduled to resume. (May 18) 
  • On May 31 childcare facilities can reopen with restrictions and enhanced cleaning procedures. (May 14) 
  • 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) 
  • On May 15 massage therapy, acupuncture, cosmetic therapy, tattoo parlors, and body piercing services will be permitted to reopen. (May 12) 
  • Governor DeWine announced the next phase of the Responsible RestartOhio plan which involves the reopening of bars and restaurants. (May 7 
  • On May 15 outdoor dining will resume at Ohio restaurants; dine-in service will resume on May 21. (May 7) 
  • On May 15 personal care services, such as salons, will reopen. (May 7) 
  • Governor DeWine announced that while Ohio will not require customers of retail establishments to wear face coverings, they will be strongly encouraged. (April 28) 
  • 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 that the Ohio Department of Health will issue a health order requiring K-12 students to wear face coverings while at school. (August 4 
  • Governor DeWine and leaders of the Ohio General Assembly are requesting that the Ohio Controlling Board approve an initial request on Monday to allocate $200 million for higher education and $100 million for K-12 schools from the Coronavirus Relief Fund. (July 9 
  • Governor DeWine announced new guidance for resuming school in the fall. (July 2 
  • Reopening procedures will be determined by each district individually, according to the Governor’s office. Ohio has 610 districts. The state will release a set of reopening guidelines for districts to consider in the coming days. (June 16) 
  • Governor DeWine announced Ohio “fully intends” to open K-12 school in the fall. (June 2) 

State Higher Education:

  • The Ohio Department of Higher Educationin consultation with Ohio colleges, universities, the Ohio Department of Health, and health experts across the statedeveloped guidance to help campuses safely reopen. (July 9)  
  • Ohio University announced a phased return to campus this fall. (July 31) 
  • A list of Ohio universities and colleges planning to reopen in the fall can be found here.  

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