CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine is optimistic about being able to ramp up the state’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts in the coming months.
The governor visited Riverview House, a senior living facility on Hackberry Street in East Walnut Hills, on Friday.
After getting an inside look at the facility, Gov. DeWine answered some questions.
The governor was asked if Ohio can meet the goal President Joe Biden outlined during his primetime address on Thursday. Biden said he is directing states to make all adults eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine by May 1.
“Best I can tell, we are on track to do that,” Gov. DeWine responded. “We’re going to move forward and make it available as quickly as we can.”
It is possible ages 16 and under in Ohio will be a major focus for vaccines by August, the governor added.
Gov. DeWine’s visit to Riverview House comes a few days after nursing home visitation guidelines were updated.
This week, the federal government announced new national guidelines for nursing home visitation advising that facilities should allow responsible indoor visitation for all residents, regardless of the vaccination status of the resident or visitor.
- Unvaccinated residents, if the COVID-19 county positivity rate is greater than 10 percent and less than 70 percent of residents in the facility are fully vaccinated;
- Residents with confirmed COVID-19 infection, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated, until they have met the criteria to discontinue transmission-based precautions; or
- Residents in quarantine, whether vaccinated or unvaccinated until they have met the criteria for release from quarantine.
The updated guidance also emphasizes that “compassionate care” visits should be allowed at all times, regardless of a resident’s vaccination status, the county’s COVID-19 positivity rate, or an outbreak.
As of Thursday, people who are 50 and older are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Ohio.
So are those with Type 2 diabetes and end-stage renal disease.
The Ohio Department of Health has launched a state portal to schedule COVID-19 appointments. You can go to the online site to schedule at gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov.
Gov. DeWine also talked about the progress of lifting Ohio’s health orders.
The governor announced last week all health orders will be lifted when the state gets down to 50 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents for two weeks.
DeWine said Friday it is possible the orders could be lifted in seven or eight weeks if recent trends continue in the decline of new COVID-19 cases.
Below is the latest COVID-19 numbers from the Ohio Department of Health:
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