The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Highland County doubled on Thursday to four, and Highland County Emergency Operations Center Public Information Officer Branden Jackman said those figures are only the beginning.
But rather than worry about how many confirmed cases there are in the county, Jackman said it is more important that local residents consider if they need to do something different, of if there’s something they can do to help.
“Let’s answer these questions and talk about more numbers. What does it mean to you that we have four cases now or that it was recklessly released that one of the cases was in a certain town? Not a thing,” Jackman said. “The last two cases have been community spread cases, which means it’s prevalent throughout Highland County. You should be treating everyone outside your immediate family as though they have COVID-19 and practice physical distancing, wash your hands if you come in contact with someone, cover your cough, never touch your face, and stay home if you are sick.”
“There’s nothing different to do. Observe the stay at home order. Only travel if it’s essential,” Jackman continued. “Groceries and essential supplies to keep your home running are a necessity, but let’s try and maintain the one cart, one person (rule) and not take the whole family into harm’s way. The current stay at home order was meant to expire Monday at midnight. As most of you heard, the order has been extended until May 1st with some changes. As soon as we have a hard copy of the new order, we’ll update with the changes as the governor clarified some things in the order.”
The public information officer offered other ways local residents can help.
”We had posted last week about cloth masks. If you are still interested in making masks, you can. Once done, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org to have those picked up,” he said. “I posted a link on my personal Facebook as well as that of (the Paint Creek Joint EMS/Fire District) asking for licensed individuals in the community that may be available to help with the surge.”
For those interested in numbers, Jackman said they are going to grow daily for the forseeable future. He said that as of late Thursday afternoon, 802 was the number of people in Ohio requiring hospitalization because of the coronavirus. He said that of those 802, there are 260 that require intensive care, and that 81 Ohioans have lost their fight with the virus.
”Say a small prayer for the family and friends of those who are hurting tonight because of this virus,” Jackman said. “Wash your hands, cover your cough, and don’t touch your face so that you don’t become one of these numbers tomorrow. We’re all in this together. Be nice.“
Reach Jeff Gilliland at 937-402-2522.