Vax-a-Million leads to vaccine increase, Governor DeWine says

Staff Report

Here are the latest details on how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting the area:

• Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced Monday that Ohio continues to see increased uptake of the COVID-19 vaccine following the announcement of the Ohio Vax-a-Million promotion.

From May 14 through May 19, as compared to May 7 through May 12, vaccinations in Ohio increased 94 percent among those 16 and 17 years old, 46 percent among those 18 and 19 years old, and 55 percent among those between 20 and 49 years old, he said.

In total, 2,758,470 individual Ohioans have registered for the $1 million Vax-a-Million drawing and 104,386 young Ohioans have registered for the scholarship drawings. Just over 5.2 millions Ohioans have had at least one dose of a COVID vaccine.

Vaccinated Ohioans can register for subsequent drawings at or by calling 833-4-ASK-ODH. Once you register, your entry will be carried over for future drawings. Ohio Lottery will remove duplicate entries.

• DeWine also clarified information about isolation and quarantine in regard to Ohio’s school students.

Beginning on June 2, and in accordance with CDC guidance, vaccinated children do not have to quarantine or be tested if they are exposed to COVID-19. Unvaccinated children who are exposed to COVID-19 should quarantine if the exposure took place outside of a classroom setting where masks were required to be worn. Unvaccinated children should also isolate if they test positive for the coronavirus. Local health departments should determine if quarantine or isolation should occur.

“While these are not state health orders, isolation and quarantine are standard infection control practices that have been used successfully for hundreds of years,” said DeWine. “These practices are the same practices that are used for many other communicable diseases including measles and mumps.”

Individual school districts will decide whether or not to continue masking and social distancing in school settings.

• Latest numbers from the Ohio Department of Health show that there have now been 4,300 cases overall in Fulton County, an increase of 31 in the last week..

There have been 241 hospitalizations in the county. There have been 71 total deaths since March 2020.

Lucas County had 42,908 cases and 845 deaths as of Tuesday. Defiance County had 4,284 cases and 97 deaths, Williams County 3,448 cases and 77 deaths, and Henry County 2,716 cases and 67 deaths.

Ohio has had 1,098,593 cases as of Tuesday. Statewide, there have been 58,804 hospitalizations and 8,075 intensive care unit admissions related to the disease, as of Tuesday’s update.

There have been 19,753 deaths of Ohioans reported through Tuesday.

• Only one zip code in Fulton County had more than 10 cases over the last two weeks, according to data from the Ohio Department of Health. Wauseon had the most with 18 cases.

Fayette had 7 and Swanton 5. Fayette had the highest case rate, with 255.3 cases per 100,000 people. Wauseon’s rate was 135.9, while every other zip code was under 100.

• On Monday, DeWine called on managed care companies to continue efforts to increase vaccine uptake among Ohio Medicaid beneficiaries. Right now, the vaccine uptake among Medicaid beneficiaries is 22 percent, as compared to a 45 percent uptake among Ohioans overall.

DeWine initially challenged managed care plans to implement new efforts earlier this month, and since then, new efforts include:

– Partnering with pharmacies and providing incentives, such as gift cards, to those on Medicaid who are vaccinated at a pharmacy.

– Incentivizing pharmacists to counsel those picking up prescriptions about vaccinations.

– Working with local health departments, community providers, and faith-based initiatives to help spread the word about vaccination events to those on Medicaid.

– Providing staff to help run vaccination events when needed and providing transportation to make sure people can get to and from the vaccination locations.

– Tailoring strategies to meet people where they are, such as identifying individuals who can’t leave their homes and working with providers to go to these locations to administer vaccinations.

– Working with providers to help them create vaccine opportunities outside of normal business hours.

• The Fulton County Health Department will host a walk-in COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Thursday from 1-6 p.m. Free vaccines are available for Fulton County residents 12 years of age or older.

The health department is located at 606 S. Shoop Ave. in Wauseon.

• Share your local COVID-19 related information at [email protected]

Staff Report