Morning Headlines: Long-Term Care Facilities Now Required to Allow Visitation; Ohio Tops 1M COVID Cases
Here are your morning headlines for Tuesday, March 23:
- Visitations at long-term care facilities now required
- Ohio tops 1M COVID cases
- Vaccination site at Kent State opens Tuesday
- Biden to talk up health insurance cost cuts in visit to Ohio
- Scrutinized FirstEnergy hires ethics and compliance officer
- Reed launches bid for Cleveland mayor
- Cleveland Restaurant shootout kills 2
- Goodell on hand for draft in Cleveland
Visitations at long-term care facilities now required
Visitations at Ohio's nursing homes and assisted living facilities will now be required. Gov. Mike DeWine on Monday said that as long as most staff and residents are vaccinated, family members will be allowed in residents' private rooms for a minimum of 30 minutes. He also said staff will continue to be tested once a week, and twice a week for those who are unvaccinated. DeWine says facilities can still restrict indoor visits if fewer than 70% of residents are vaccinated, the county’s positivity rate is above 10%, or if there’s an outbreak. Visitors, staff, and residents will still need to wear masks.
Ohio tops 1M COVID cases
Ohio has topped 1 million coronavirus cases, the seventh state to reach the milestone. Around 52,000 of those cases required hospitalization, and more than 18,000 people have died in the past year. As of Sunday, nearly 2.8 million Ohioans had received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, or around 24% of the state’s adult population. Gov. Mike DeWine on Monday announced that local health departments with extra COVID-19 vaccine doses at the end of the day can give those to anyone age 16 and over, making all Ohioans eligible a week early.
Vaccination site at Kent State opens Tuesday
A mass vaccination site at The Kent State University Field House begins today for Portage County residents. It will vaccinate as many as 2,000 people each Tuesday this spring. Registration is required on the county’s health district website. PARTA’s Dial-A-Ride service is providing free rides to vaccination sites around Portage County.
Biden to talk up health insurance cost cuts in visit to Ohio
President Joe Biden will be in Ohio today as part of a nationwide tour promoting his stimulus package. Part of Biden’s speech Tuesday at Ohio State University will focus on health care. The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act expands subsides for those buying coverage through HealthCare.gov and expands Medicaid coverage for low-income individuals. Gov. Mike DeWine says he will greet the president in Columbus.
Scrutinized FirstEnergy hires ethics and compliance officer
Akron-based FirstEnergy, which is under investigation by federal authorities, has hired a new ethics and compliance officer. Antonio Fernandez previously was chief compliance and privacy officer for a New Jersey electric utility company. The U.S. Justice Department, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission are investigating FirstEnergy for its role in what authorities say was a $60 million bribery scandal in Ohio.
Reed launches bid for Cleveland mayor
Former Cleveland City Councilman Zack Reed has launched a second bid for mayor. Reed, who is a Democrat recently stepped down as minority affairs coordinator for Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose. Reed finished second in Cleveland’s 2017 mayoral primary, losing to Mayor Frank Jackson in the November election. Jackson has not said whether he will seek a fifth term in office. The non-partisan primary is in September with the top two vote-getters facing off in November.
Cleveland Restaurant shootout kills 2
An early morning shootout between two men in a Cleveland restaurant killed two people. Officers were called to My Friends Restaurant in the Cudell neighborhood at about 4 a.m. Monday and found a 21-year-old woman on the ground outside and a 27-year-old man inside, both with fatal gunshot wounds. Two men who were also wounded in the shooting were arrested.
Goodell on hand for draft in Cleveland
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will announce the names of this year’s rookie draft class within shouting distance of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The league announced some of its plans for this year’s three-day event in Cleveland, which will include some of the prospects being in person after last year’s draft was held virtually because of the pandemic. Some of Cleveland’s iconic downtown locations will be incorporated into the three-day festivities from April 29 to May 1.