Ohio Department of Health postponing elective surgeries amid coronavirus outbreak


It's in an effort to preserve personal protective equipment for healthcare workers

An emergency sign on a hospital emergency room entrance.

Credit: pablohart/E+/Getty Images

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKBN) – The Ohio Department of Health has issued an order that elective surgeries and procedures in Ohio’s hospitals be postponed.

It’s in an effort to preserve personal protective equipment for healthcare workers and first responders amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

The order goes into effect by the end of the day Wednesday.

The Ohio Hospital Association has estimated that the amount of personal protective equipment that will be needed during the coronavirus pandemic is equal to the amount available nationally.

“By postponing elective procedures that are safe to delay, we can protect patients and providers,” said Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine.

Surgeries will be postponed unless there is a threat to the patient’s life if it is not performed, there is a threat of permanent dysfunction of an extremity or organ system, risk of metastasis or progression of staging or risk of rapidly worsening to severe symptoms.

DeWine also signed an executive order to establish a temporary pandemic child care license for the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services to provide child care to families where parents work in the health, safety and essential service fields.

These temporary pandemic child care centers will operate under reduced regulations focused solely on the health and safety of children, according to DeWine’s office. Pandemic child care center licenses can be granted to existing child care centers, or new centers can be created.

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