COVID Press Briefings: March 2021

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Press briefings are generally held one or two days per week. Each briefing held during the month is posted here. The most recent appears at the top.

Special Update: Ohio Senate Bill 22

On March 10th the Ohio legislature passed Senate Bill 22 to limit the emergency powers of the Ohio governor and local health officials to issue orders during public health emergencies. As reported by the Columbus Dispatch, the bill includes these provisions:

  • Any state of emergency order will expire after 90 days unless lawmakers voted to extend it in 60-day increments. 
  • Lawmakers can terminate an emergency after 30 days.
  • Creates the Ohio Health Oversight and Advisory Committee with equal members from both chambers.
  • Bans local boards of health from closing schools, issuing orders for specific types of businesses (i.e. shutting down gyms) or prohibiting public gatherings. 
  • Allows people to sue the state on the constitutionality of any order in their county of residence and pays their attorney fees if they win.

Governor DeWine vetoed the bill and the legislature has overridden the veto. This new law will take effect in 90 days. Governor DeWine was interviewed on March 25 by the Washington Post.

Friday, March 26, 2021

Governor DeWine held a press conference after touring a COVID-19 vaccination site in Canton.

Thursday, March 25, 2021
Monday, March 22, 2021

Governor DeWine announces new visitation rules for Ohio nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Both need to follow Ohio orders but nursing homes also must follow federal guidance from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Ohio has worked to align its orders and guidance with federal mandates.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

There is no sound for the first 12 seconds of this video, then it’s OK.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Governor DeWine spoke at Cleveland State University as the Bert L.& Iris S. Wolstein Center is opened as a mass vaccination site. This step coincides with some big new announcements about vaccinations in Ohio. As shown in this two screenshots from WKYC-TV, new eligibility will open up across Ohio on March 19 and March 29. WKYC noted that once eligible on Match 29, teens ages 16 and 17 will only be allowed the Pfizer vaccine. Federal authorization for the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines currently starts at age 18 and up.

Source: WKYC-TV
Thursday, March 11, 2021

DeWine noted that this is the 150th press briefing held during this pandemic — all of them posted on this blog, I think!

Monday, March 8, 2021

DeWine notes that tomorrow, March 9th, will mark the one-year anniversary of the first COVID case identified in Ohio.

Thursday, March 4, 2021

Today Governor DeWine delivered an address today rather than the standard press briefing with questions. Declaring that “Victory is in sight,” he said that when Ohio gets down to 50 cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 people, sustained for two weeks, he will cancel all health orders.

Monday, March 1, 2021

Today DeWine announced that this Thursday, March 4th, Ohio will move to Phase 1C of its COVID vaccination plan. All individuals 60 years of age and above will be eligible, along with other new groups of people.

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