MANSFIELD – Richland Public Health was alerted Thursday afternoon that Richland County has moved from Risk Level 1/Yellow into Risk Level 2/Orange in the Ohio Public Health Advisory System. The Level 2 Risk designation means that there is increased exposure and spread of COVID-19 in Richland County. Richland County residents are encouraged to exercise a high level of caution and to follow all current health orders.
Facial coverings (masks) continue to be mandated in the entire state. This includes when in any indoor location that is not a residence; Outdoors and unable to consistently maintain a distance of six feet or more from individuals who are not members of their household; waiting for, riding, driving or operating public transportation, a taxi, a private car service or ride sharing vehicle. This does not apply to vehicles engaged in direct travel through a county that does not stop in that county. (See this link About Cloth Face Coverings)
Richland Public Health as well the Governor’s Office and Ohio Department of Health continue to encourage all Richland County residents to limit activities as much as possible and follow all current health orders.
Residents should follow the recommended guidelines for Risk Level 2 to reduce the spread of COVID-19:
- Conduct a daily health/symptom self-evaluation and stay at home if symptomatic.
- Maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet from non-household members.
- Wear face coverings in public, especially when social distancing is difficult to maintain.
- Increase caution when interacting with others not practicing social distancing or wearing face covers.
- Avoid traveling to high-risk areas.
- Follow good hygiene standards, including:
- Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Use hand sanitizer frequently.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Cover coughs or sneezes (e.g., into a tissue, or elbow).
- Avoid contact with anyone who is considered high-risk.
- High-risk individuals should take extra care to follow precautions.
- Decrease in-person interactions outside the household.
- Seek medical care as needed, but limit or avoid unnecessary visits to hospitals, nursing homes, and residential care facilities to see others as much as possible.
Below is the timeline for where Richland County has been in the Ohio Public Health Advisory System:
· July 2: Governor DeWine announces color coding of counties by COVID-19 spread risk.
· July 16: Richland County goes to Level 3 (Red) in the Ohio Public Health Alert System.
· July 22: Governor DeWine makes face coverings mandatory for the whole state.
· July 30: Richland County goes to Level 1 (Yellow) on Ohio Public Health Advisory System
· August 6: Richland County goes to Level 2 (Orange) on Ohio Public Health Advisory System
· August 20: Richland County goes to Level 1 (Yellow) on Ohio Public Health Advisory System
· Sept. 3 & 10: Richland County still Level 1 (Yellow) on Ohio Public Health Advisory System.
· Sept. 18: Richland County at Level 2 (Orange) on Ohio Public Health Advisory System.
The Ohio Public Health Advisory System was established to increase the information available to Ohioans about COVID-19 risk at the County Level. Seven indicators are analyzed to assess risk for each county. Level 2 is reached when a county triggers 2-3 of the above indicators. The indicators triggered in Richland County are as follows:
1. Proportion of Non-Congregate Cases
2. Sustained increase in Emergency Department Visits
3. Sustained Increase in Outpatient Visits
For more information about the Ohio Public Health Advisory System, visit http://coronavirus.ohio.gov.
For more information about the coronavirus situation in Richland County visit https://www.richlandhealth.org/ and follow the coronavirus links in the sliders at the top of the page.
If you have questions, call the Ohio Department of Health COVID-19 Call Line 1-833-427-5634. The call line is open from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. each day, including weekends.