On Monday evening, Governor DeWine announced on Twitter that he was declaring a state of emergency after three Ohioans tested positive for the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Cuyahoga County. As testing continues and becomes more widely available, more are expected.

The Ohio BWC also announced last night that it will only hold the online component of its Safety Congress & Expo, which was scheduled to begin Wednesday. All in-person programs and the Expo Marketplace have been cancelled. See the release from the Ohio BWC below.

Obviously, much is unknown about COVID-19 and the situation is very fluid. AGC of Ohio will continue to monitor the situation and make any necessary adjustments to its in-person meetings and programs as more information and guidance is available from the Centers for Disease Control and Ohio Department of Health.

Below are some resources to assist your company:

Call Center: Ohio Department of Health opened a call center to answer questions regarding coronavirus (COVID-19). The call center will be open seven days a week from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m. and can be reached at 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634). Call center staff includes licensed nurses and infectious disease experts who can answer questions and provide accurate information about COVID-19, the risk to the public, and the state’s response.

Centers for Disease Control (CDC): Coronavirus webpage; Recommended basic protective measures

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue away
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surface

Proven Disinfectants: EPA’s Registered Antimicrobial Products for Use Against Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the Cause of COVID-19

Article from Thompson Hine: Novel COVID-19 Virus, Commercial Contracts and Force Majeure

Coronavirus concerns cancel Ohio Safety Congress & Expo 2020

Online-only component goes on as scheduled

The Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) has cancelled its annual Ohio Safety Congress & Expo scheduled for Wednesday through Friday at the Greater Columbus Convention Center due to concerns surrounding the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

An online component of the workplace health and safety event will go on as scheduled, however, providing the opportunity to secure continuing education credits for professionals in the health care, human resources, safety, and legal communities. The 8,600 who registered for the in-person event will be enrolled automatically for the online event.

“The health and safety of Ohioans remain our top concern, and we must take every precaution to protect our citizens,” said BWC Administrator/CEO Stephanie McCloud, following the direction of Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and local and state health leaders and experts.

Safety Congress’s kickoff session at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday is still scheduled, but for an online audience only.  The in-person component will not be rescheduled this year due to the size and scope of the event.  Attendees looking to attain continuing education credits are encouraged to review the sessions offered through the online option.  For those who have yet to register, as well as details as they become available, visit Ohio Safety Congress & Expo.

More than 300 vendors had registered for the Expo Marketplace to showcase their latest workplace safety and health products. BWC will reimburse the vendors the fees for their booth space.

BWC encourages the public to stay up to date on the latest COVID-19 information by visiting the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) website coronavirus.ohio.gov and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. ODH also has a call center open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. to answer questions regarding COVID-19. The call center can be reached at 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634).