MEIGS COUNTY — As COVID-19 (coronavirus) continues to spread through the nation and world, many local agencies, businesses and organizations are taking steps to help limit the spread.
Friday evening’s Meigs Chamber & Tourism Spring Dinner and Auction has been postponed, with a new date to be announced later.
“Due to Governor DeWine’s order and in the best interest of our Chamber members and businesses, we have made the decision to postpone the Spring Dinner & Auction. We appreciate your support, donations and time that so many have put into this, but we feel this is the most responsible decision at this time. Please watch your emails and our Facebook page for further updates. Thank you for understanding,” read a statement from the Chamber about the event.
Likewise, Saturday’s Lucky Leprechaun Dash hosted by the River City Runners has been postponed.
“It is out of an abundance of caution that we have decided to postpone this weekend’s race. While there are no known local cases, the governor has placed Ohio under a state of emergency and asked that non-essential social functions be cancelled or delayed,” read the statement from River City Runners. “Your health and the health of our community remains our priority and passion. As such, this race will be rescheduled as soon as we can safely do so.”
On Thursday, the Meigs County Council on Aging announced that it would be shutting down “center-based”operations effective immediately. Senior meals will still be available as carry-out and Meals on Wheels.
“After careful consideration our Health and Safety Team has reached a decision to shut down center-based operations effective this afternoon. This will include the senior lunch program at the center and any senior activities and events for the rest of March. Senior lunches will be available for carryout only during this closure. We are urging our regular participants and guests to follow the CDC guidelines to try to avoid contracting the corona virus,” read a statement from the agency.
“This decision was not made lightly and is intended to protect the seniors that we serve. So far this virus has hit the older population harder than any other age group and we would rather err on the side of caution when it comes to the health, wellbeing and lives of our people. Meals on Wheels, limited Transportation and Homemaker services are continuing,” the statement continued.
Additionally, Overbrook Rehabilitation Center in Middleport is changing policies on visitation during the situation it was announced on Wednesday.
“Resident safety is a top priority for Overbrook Center. Every resident and family should have a clean, safe living environment. We agree that the spread of this novel virus is a critical issue that requires attention. Our goal is to try and keep the virus out and if it is found in the center, to minimize the spread to anyone else,” read the statement.
It continued, “We are acting now and have reviewed our infection prevention and control policies and procedures, as this is key to preventing coronavirus and other common viruses. We are ensuring that our staff and residents are practicing proper hand hygiene, and we have a trained infection preventionist who is taking the lead on facility risk assessment for this and other infections. It is critical that we remind all employees who are sick to stay home and ask all family members and volunteers to avoid visiting our center for the time being. We are in very close communication with local and state health officials to ensure we are taking the appropriate steps.”
The 4-H clubs and programs in Meigs County, and around the state, are also being impacted by the directives to close or alter events.
In a letter on Thursday, the Meigs County OUS Extension state, “As you may be aware, The Ohio State University has announced the suspension of face-to-face instruction and the move to virtual instruction effective immediately through March 31. Events deemed nonessential are postponed between now and April 20, 2020. There will be evaluation whether they should continue in person beyond this time. Our primary concern is for the health and safety of all our people. Virtual meetings are encouraged. Based on these guidelines, all 4-H Clubs must postpone/cancel all face-to-face meetings between now and March 30.”
“In addition to all 4-H club meetings, the following list of 4-H events qualify as non-essential between now and April 20. Based on these guidelines, these non-essential activities must be postponed/ cancelled/ or held virtually. Examples include (this list is not exhaustive and subject to change at any notice): 4-H committees, including advisory, saddle horse, endowment, etc.; Club kick-offs, open houses, etc.; Community service projects; Educational clinics; Events put on by advisory or county committees or clubs, including fundraisers; Fundraisers; Social events (egg hunts, square dances); and, Teen leader groups.
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Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel.