COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKBN) – A lawsuit brought by a reporter for the Columbus Dispatch is going to the Ohio Supreme Court.
The court will hear the case of Randy Ludlow v. the Ohio Department of Health in connection to the release of records involving deaths in Ohio from March 1, 2020, to January 26, 2021.
The case stems from a freedom of information request asking for a spreadsheet showing all death certificates delivered to the department during that time period.
At first, ODH denied the request claiming that they didn’t have the computer software to provide the spreadsheet but then later provided the information but with identifying information redacted.
Ludlow also wanted the names and addresses of the deceased but was denied based on the claim that the information is protected medical information. Ludlow claimed that the identifying information is not protected in death.
A Special Master’s report in the case determined that Ludlow should receive the information but ODH appealed, which was sustained.
Ludlow is appealing the reversal and the Ohio Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case.
A request was filed Tuesday to have all case information turned over to the high court.
In July 2020, WKBN 27 First News worked to gather local COVID-19 death statistics throughout the Valley and found that sorting through information was murky. You can read the full report in the link below.