YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — Youngstown officials say that city businesses have been following instructions from the state on how to handle the COVID-19 outbreak.
Erin Bishop, head of the city health district, said inspectors have found no violations in Youngstown so far. He said some businesses that have stayed open have even gone above and beyond what has been recommended to keep employees safe.
“We have not shut anyone down,” Bishop said.
Earlier this month, Governor Mike DeWine issued a stay at home order to help keep the virus from spreading. Several businesses that were not deemed essential, including gyms or hair and nail salons, have been closed.
As of Tuesday morning, Mahoning County has 117 confirmed cases of COVID-19. The Youngstown City Health District is monitoring 12 of those cases, Bishop said.
Bishop said she was not sure how many of those patients are in the hospital but several are being quarantined in their homes.
The state has reported a total of 1,933 cases. Of the top four counties in the state, three are in northeast Ohio: Cuyahoga County has 493, Summit has 118 and Mahoning has 117.
Franklin County is second in the state with 254 cases.
Health department workers check with those patients who are quarantined at least once a day to make sure their symptoms do not get worse, Bishop said.
They also have a series of questions to ask so they can find out who those patients may have come in contact with within the previous 14 days.
Bishop said it appears that city residents who were infected first caught the disease in late February or early March.
A checklist has also been developed for inspectors when they check businesses, Bishop said.
Bishop said her philosophy is that any business that has stayed open is deemed essential, so the number one goal is “to decide if you are taking care of your employees.”
So far, she has not received any complaints about barbers or hairdressers who have been working from home, but she added if she did those would complaints would be taken very seriously.