FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:December 17, 2021
MEDIA CONTACTS:Dan Tierney: 614-644-0957 Breann Almos: 614-644-0957
COVID-19 Update: Ohio National Guard Mobilized, Hospital Staff Needed
(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Ohio Governor Mike DeWine today provided the following updates on Ohio’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
OHIO NATIONAL GUARD MOBILIZED
Governor DeWine mobilized 1,050 members of the Ohio National Guard to help relieve the hospital staffing strain caused by the rising number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients is causing. Of the total mobilized guard members, approximately 150 are highly-trained medical professionals and will deploy to help meet critical needs at hospitals and testing locations. The remaining 900 guard members will help with patient transport, housekeeping, and food services. Guard members will be brought on duty beginning on Monday.
The Ohio Department of Health is working with an Ohio health care staffing company to help meet hospital staffing needs. This agreement will allow for Ohio hospitals to bring in qualified nurses and other providers from out-of-state to fill needed positions to help ease some of the current added pressure on hospitals and staff.
More than 4,700 people arecurrently hospitalized in Ohio fighting COVID-19, that equates to one in every 5 hospital patients. This is the highest number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 this year, and the number of hospitalized patients is rapidly approaching an all-time high.
Due to the increase in COVID-19 hospital admisions many hospitals have been forced to postpone elective surgeries, transfer patients to other hospitals, impose visitation standards, and/or implement what they call “crisis standards of care,” in which they have no choice but to take extraordinary steps to care for patients in ways that aren’t typical, such as providing intensive care in emergency rooms or in post-surgical units.
In Northern Ohio (Ohio Hospital Zone 1) most hospitals have suspended elective surgeries. In Central and Southeast Ohio (Ohio Hospital Zone 2), the same thing is beginning to happen. In SoutheastOhio, (Ohio Hospital Zone 3), hospital leaders are preparing to take similar action.
The best way to relieve the strain on our health care providers is to stay up-to-date on COVID-19 vaccinations to prevent serious illness and hospitalizations. To find a vaccination provider near you, visit http://gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov.
CASE DATA/VACCINE INFORMATION
In-depth COVID-19 data for Ohio: coronavirus.ohio.gov.
Ohio's central scheduling system: gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov
All vaccine providers: vaccine.coronavirus.ohio.gov
More vaccine information: coronavirus.ohio.gov/vaccine
Video of today's full update, including versions with foreign language translation, can be viewed on the Ohio Channel's YouTube page.
For more information on Ohio's response to COVID-19, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov or call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH.