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  • Good afternoon.

  • I'm Dr Akram Boutros President to see off the Metro health system.

  • And it is my pleasure to welcome you here today.

  • Thank you for coming.

  • Uh, this snowy day today you will hear how mental health and the state of Ohio are preparing for potential outbreak of covert 19 or Corona virus.

  • I'm joined here by Governor Mike Blind, director of a higher depart of mental health Doctor Amy Act him Guy Hobie County Health Commissioner Mr Terry Allen and MetroHealth Keith Quality Officer Dr Brooke Watts.

  • For more than 183 years, Metro Health has been managing health crises that spread fear and alarm throughout a region.

  • It all began with Cleveland Cholera outbreak in 18 37.

  • This was filed by a TB crisis in the 19 hundreds and later the polio epidemic of the 19 fifties.

  • In the 19 eighties, we spearheaded efforts to address the spread and treatment of HIV and AIDS.

  • When contracting the disease was a death sentence on one Ebola hit our shores five years ago would quickly volunteered to become the state's Onley designated Ebola center treatment center.

  • Today, their center includes a special disease unit that focuses on emerging disease threats.

  • We stand ready to treat covert 19.

  • Should cases appear here, The governor and Dr Actin have met with our team on visited our special disease unit.

  • We've discussed our preparation for covert 19.

  • We are honored to have governor wine.

  • Here he was.

  • He has been a friend and ally when he was in the United States Senate and a strong partner on the opioid epidemic Has Ohio Attorney General It is reassuring to all of us that this governor understand the health needs of the high ones and that strong safety net institutions like mental health are critical to our higher on the United States.

  • We are the first line of defense against emerging disease threats.

  • Ladies and gentlemen, it is my privilege to introduce covering our wine.

  • Dr.

  • Boudreau's thank you very very much for having us here today.

  • We just finished a tour of emerging diseases unit to learn more about there.

  • Preparations that are occurring for infectious diseases such as the flu and the corona virus.

  • What they do here at Metro Health it's certainly very impressive.

  • And Ohio is in Fort Fortunate to have doctors, nurses, epidemiologists and others committed to protecting our health and well being from the spread of diseases.

  • We're very, very fortunate to have that.

  • So, Doctor, thank you very, very much.

  • After I was elected governor of this state a little over a year ago, I asked Dr Amy acted to head our Department of Health.

  • Since the beginning of the news about the Corona virus six weeks ago, Dr Actin and her team at the State Department of Health have been engaged with our local and with our federal partners preparing for whatever might come next.

  • Dr Actin updates me at least once, sometimes many times every single day.

  • She briefed our Cabinet this morning again, and she has just returned last night after spending the last several days in Washington, D.

  • C.

  • Where she has been working with her counterparts across the country as well as officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the CDC and the U.

  • S.

  • Department of Health and Human Service is and the White House.

  • The threat of the Corona virus in the United States and in Ohio remains low, and currently in Ohio we have no confirmed cases.

  • We have no confirmed cases nor any persons under investigation.

  • We have had seven people tested for the virus in Ohio and all of these individuals have tested negative.

  • But we know that this could change.

  • And so we have to be prepared.

  • In all Ohioans, all Ohioans must have a sense of urgency about this emerging health threat.

  • And that's what I want to talk about Today is imperative that we be open with the public and that we communicate information in real time about the Corona virus to both inform and educate the people of the state of Ohio.

  • My commitment is that we will communicate what we know when we know it.

  • That is our obligation.

  • And that is what we intend to do.

  • Certainly today no one knows all the answers.

  • No one does.

  • Dr.

  • Actin will share today with you what we do know so far.

  • But we certainly cannot predict the future.

  • And this disease continues to evolve, making all the more important this things change.

  • We continue to work with our local partners to communicate information to the public in Ohio.

  • Our Department of Health are State Department of Health works directly with 100 and 13 separate county and city health departments around the state.

  • We work very closely and collaboratively with these local departments.

  • They're truly the first line of defense in every one of our communities.

  • The state Department of Health works with our local partners to provide guidance to them to provide support to them, to give them information and to help help them implement their various programs.

  • Also, our state health department works closely with our federal partners, CC and HHS, who offered technical expertise and funding for many of our programs.

  • It is important to understand the role of the Ohio Department of Health, and our local departments have helped play in protecting our health here in the state of Ohio.

  • The truth is that much of what they do average citizen never hears about doesn't think about, because what they do is focus on prevention.

  • What they do is focus on planning for an emergency.

  • We have people in Ohio working hard every single day to make sure, for example, that our food is safety.

  • Our water is drinkable, our swimming pools or clean and our nursing homes are following safety guidelines to protect their residents.

  • That work goes on every single day out of sight.

  • Many times, their mission is really to diagnose and identify health hazards in our communities.

  • And they were quickly, many times quietly mostly behind the scenes to solve and help prevent health problems.

  • Our state Department of Health and our local health departments across the state have teams of doctors and epidemiologists and emergency preparedness experts whose job it is to plan for outbreaks.

  • This preparation is candidly part of their standard operating procedure.

  • In a moment, Dr Action will talk specifically about what Ohio has been doing for the last six weeks in preparation for a possible Corona virus outbreak.

  • And what will happen if somewhere in Ohio does in the future, test positive for the virus.

  • As we continue this work, I have tasked my Cabinet directors with implementing preventive steps to help minimize the threat and the spread of spread of not only the Corona virus but also the flu, because the fact remains little high ones today or in a much higher risk because of getting the flu.

  • Then from getting the Corona virus.

  • Last year in this country, there were over 34,000 deaths caused by the flu, the CDC estimates that there have been at least 16,000 flu deaths in the United States so far just this season, and that figure might be as high as 41,000.

  • Flew remains a major killer in this country.

  • While we do not have data about how many adults have died in Ohio from the flu, we do know don't do know that there have been nearly 1200 flu related hospitalizations as of February 15th.

  • And tragically, two Children, both young girls here in northeast Ohio, have died from the flu this season.

  • Your 16 year old and car hire county 11 year old in Lake County, they said.

  • The adult numbers in Ohio we do not have.

  • And so, as we outlined the steps Ohioans can take to protect themselves from a possible Corona virus outbreak, is equally important to take these very Sam steps.

  • Same steps to prevent the spread of the flu that we know is already here today.

  • I have asked my cabinet directors to implement several very important steps in their agencies to help mitigate the risk of both the flu and possible Corona virus in Ohio.

  • As a state, I believe it is important that we lead by example.

  • And so what I'm ordering today, I hope, does that as far as the state is concerned, we run institutions buildings to veterans home, six state hospitals, nine lodges at our state parks.

  • We have 28 state prisons in Ohio, so we have an obligation to ramp up toe, ramp up what we're doing and tow, have that sense of urgency ourselves about what I'm asking all Highlands toe have, and that is that sense of urgency and preparing for what may be coming.

  • So here are some of things that I'm ordering today, and I strongly encourage everyone else across the state of Ohio who runs businesses, runs, hospitals, nursing home schools and other facilities that if you haven't done these things already to examine your existing disease prevention plans and consider additional measures, now is the time to review what you're doing.

  • Once again, now is a time for a sense of urgency.

  • I am today directing the Ohio Department transportation to post information from our Department of Health in all state rest areas, on hand washing protocols and to include messages on Ohio travel TV.

  • I'm asking our department of rehabilitation and corrections and the department you service is to increase the frequency of frequency of and be very aggressive in the use of disinfectant measures in all their state facilities to protect the inmates, the families and the staff I'm calling on.

  • Our colleges and universities are college and university leaders to urge every student, every faculty member, every employee, that if they have not yet received a flu shot to do this immediately, go to the campus health clinic and get these shots today.

  • Further, I'm asking our college and university leaders to prohibit college related travel to nations where the CDC has recommended no travel such as China and South Korea and for all Ohioans for all of Highlands, please consider your foreign travel.

  • Anyone thinking about foreign travel should monitor the CD Seas Travel Advisory website for updates.

  • This is updated every single day, and as this virus continues and what we know about continues to emerge, this information we can bet will continue to change.

  • Monitor the CDC Web Web page.

  • It's very important to do that I also masking our colleges and universities to take appropriate action to accommodate students, were studying abroad and may need to come back to the United States in mid semester or in mid quarter.

  • Help them make that transition.

  • I'm asking the Ohio Department aging to continue to work with local aging networks to identify the most vulnerable older adults in our communities, those people who have the highest needs.

  • We must make sure that we have plans in place, so if their needs are met where that is, providing additional meals or access to additional medication or other personal care needs.

  • Also, I'm telling our local aging advocates across Ohio to go out into their communities to check on nursing care facilities to ensure that all illness prevention methods are in place again, I'm asking, Are nursing homes to have this sense of urgency?

  • We will also be paying aggressive attention to common areas in state owned and leased buildings, including significantly increased cleaning frequency of these areas, use of hand sanitizer stations in common lobbies and hallways.

  • Further, I'm announcing that on Thursday of next week we'll be convening a summit in Columbus for local public Health department partners and for the health commissioners and for their staffs.

  • I will also be asked me, my cabinet directors from our state agencies to be there for that as well.

  • Though we continue to communicate with these health departments on a daily basis by phone and e mail, we feel that's been pouring to bring everyone together in person to share information, review processes, procedures, consider possible scenarios and course of action what we would do under different scenarios and discuss additional steps to help reduce the spread of disease.

  • That meeting will focus on those things and more.

  • Let me conclude by urging all high ones to listen.

  • Listen, the public health and medical experts they trained for this.

  • You're prepared for this.

  • This is what they do every single day.

  • We need to heed what they tell us.

  • We need all the high ones to help.

  • And I know a doctor.

  • Dr.

  • Actin is gonna talk about many things that average Ohioans, all of us in our daily lives cancan do.

  • But again, the basics wash your hands, avoid close contact with someone who was sick and stay home.

  • Stay home when you were sick, something that some of us find hard to do.

  • I think I ridge Ohio employers in school to be flexible if people are sick and encourage people to stay home who work for you.

  • These are simple and effective ways that all of high ones could help.

  • Let me now, at this point, turn it over to Dr Amy Actin, Who is I said has really been immersed in this for last six weeks and someone who brings in her training and background Ah, great great background to lead our efforts in regard to the Corona virus, but also what we do every single day and our departments do every single day in regard to public health.

  • Amy.

  • Okay.

  • Thank you.

  • Thank you.

  • Uh, good afternoon, everyone.

  • You see me?

  • A little sleep deprived.

  • As governor said I just got back from D.

  • C.

  • Where I spent a couple days really at at the White House, talking to leaders.

  • They're working with the leadership of the CDC and, most importantly, talking to other states.

  • It's wonderful to be here at a place that is this hospital is so amazing in their work on infectious disease.

  • So at the end, I hope reporters will also take time to learn more about what they do here.

  • Um, but I want you to know that our state stands ready.

  • I know I say that, and I know at a time when there's a lot of information flowing and seemingly changing information, it makes it harder for people, everyday people just to feel secure and what's happening.

  • But this is something we really are prepared for infectious diseases or something we know.

  • And even when there's a new infectious disease, they are predictably unpredictable.

  • In other words, pandemics and spread of infectious disease happens in a phased way, and it happens in patterns.

  • And so we really while we might not know exactly where it might spread first or where the one case in Ohio might occur, we really know what to do about it when it happens.

  • So I want a little highlands know that this system is working, and in fact, in looking around our country, I felt that we are very prepared.

  • We've taken a very conservative sort of aggressive approach, as is my nature, and, um, and we'll tell you more about that, especially in the question.

  • Answer.

  • I want to answer a lot of details, but I want to think about what this feels like for people at home who might see this or hear about what you write again.

  • Corona virus looks very much like the flu.

  • What we now know and we learn more hour by hour is that it's very contagious.

  • It's particularly catchy.

  • Um, you know, in terms of its morbidity and disease state, it's It's a little more dangerous than the flu, but it's not as dangerous as things we've seen in the past like you have dealt with here.

  • Like Ebola or stars or MERS.

  • It acts like a flu, a cold.

  • You have the symptoms of coughing, fever, body aches.

  • In fact, there are many people who probably get it who will never know.

  • They got it, just like many people get the flu and never know they have it.

  • But for people who are more vulnerable that elderly, aging people hurt, immuno compromised, they're more susceptible, just like they are to the flu.

  • So those air the groups, you know,