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Coronavirus Update: OSU Commencement, Emergency Funds, Elective Surgeries & More

Taijuan Moorman Taijuan Moorman Coronavirus Update: OSU Commencement, Emergency Funds, Elective Surgeries & MorePhoto by Emily Lebsock.
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Keep up with regular news updates regarding Columbus and Ohio’s response to COVID-19 here.

A Tuesday afternoon press conference with Governor Mike DeWine was not nearly as eventful as press conferences from the past week or so, however officials did announce a request to dentists, veterinarians and hospital systems to postpone their elective surgeries in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Locally, Tuesday, March 17 saw the announcement of the second case of COVID-19 in Columbus. Other updates come from The Ohio State University, Columbus City Council, the Commit To Be Fit 5K and more.

Postponed Events

If you haven’t already heard, Ohio’s Primary Election Day has been postponed to a later date. More information here. As of now, a new primary date has been scheduled for June 2, 2020, with vote by mail extended.

Ohio State University announced on Tuesday that its spring commencement ceremony would be postponed, with more information and a decision communicated later this month.

“Following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendation that no large events be scheduled over the next eight weeks, we have postponed our spring commencement,” read a university-wide letter from OSU President Michael Drake. “Our preference is to reschedule for later this spring, but it is premature to select a new date at this time.”

Columbus City Council has announced all upcoming meetings would be canceled through April 6. Its next regular meeting is currently scheduled for April 20. Council will continue its duties remotely and asks residents to reach out regarding issues in the community. Public comments to be accepted by email at [email protected] and via fax at 614-645-7399.

The OhioHealth Capital City Half and Quarter Marathon and the Commit To Be Fit 5K have been rescheduled to August 29, 2020, in Downtown Columbus.

Elective Surgeries

In a Tuesday afternoon press conference, Mike Abrams, president and CEO of the Ohio Hospital Association, said that hospitals around the state were being asked to postpone elective surgeries in order to preserve current personal protective equipment resources.

Mount Carmel announced it would be complying with the request, postponing non-urgent elective surgeries and procedures at Mount Carmel East, Mount Carmel St. Ann’s, Mount Carmel Grove City and Mount Carmel New Albany starting Thursday, March 19. Mount Carmel will continue to treat patients with urgent needs such as heart attacks, strokes, or trauma care. Patients affected by the change will be contacted directly.

Emergency Funds

The Columbus Foundation and United Way of Central Ohio have both announced COVID-19 response funds for Central Ohio nonprofits.

City Council added an ordinance in its Monday, March 16 meeting that commits $1 million to Emergency Human Services to support families in need of housing or food support. Council has said it will work with community partners to finalize the details and administration of the program.

“We are pulling our resources and working together to help ease the burden for hard-working folks. We know our human service organizations have systems in place to rapidly deploy resources to residents and organizations affected by this emergency,” said Council President Shannon Hardin.

For more information on COVID-19 in Ohio, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.

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