A collaborative event called Community Connection: Confronting COVID, will take place at Ohio University-Chillicothe on Thursday, October 14th.
The 6pm event will be held in the Auditorium at Bennett Hall, and will also be live-streamed.
The panel for this event will be Ross County Health Commissioner, Garrett Guillozet, Dr. Michael E. Jones, D.O. Orthopedic & Neurologist @ Adena, Dr. John Gabis, Medical Director of Community Partnerships @ Adena, & Ross County NAACP Health Chair, Nurse Practitioner, Robin Jones.
The panelist will share information & answer questions.
(Ross County) – Building on the success of our current community-based programs, the Ross County Health District (RCHD) is adding the Ohio Buckles Buckeye program! The Ohio Buckles Buckeye (OBB) grant provides child safety seats and booster seats to eligible low-income families throughout Ohio. The goals of this program are to increase the availability of child safety seats for families who could not otherwise afford them and to increase proper use of child safety seats.
“We are so excited to have the Ohio Buckles Buckeyes program back at the Ross County Health District. This program allows us to increase the availability of child safety seats for families who may not be able to afford them for their child.” said Amie Unger, Children and Family Health Director. “It also allows us the opportunity to increase correct installation and proper uses of child safety seats within our community to limit risk of injury.”
Buckling children in age- and size-appropriate car seats, booster seats, and seat belts reduces the risk of serious and fatal injuries. Correct car seat use reduces the risk for injury in a crash by 71–82% for children, while correct booster seat use reduces the risk for serious injury by 45% for children age 4–8 when compared with seat belt use alone.
In order to receive an OBB seat, income eligible families must attend a car seat class provided by RCHD staff. Income must be within Women, Infant & Children (WIC) Program guidelines but the recipient does not need to be enrolled in the WIC Program.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 46% of car seats and booster seats are used incorrectly. To help combat this percentage, the RCHD team has added 2 Certified Car Seat Technicians available to check if your child’s seat is in correctly. Seat safety checks can be done by scheduled appointment OR by walk in service.
If you or someone you know are in need of a car seat or booster seat, call the Ross County Health District at 740-775-1137.
Ross County Health District Commissioner Garrett Guillozet appeared on a Litter Media Live Special Edition, Thursday, where he talked with interviewer Mike Smith about the health district renewal levy.
“This is a five-year, 1 mill renewal levy. This is the same levy we have had for the last 25 years”, said Guillozet. “It generates about $1.4 million that assists the health district in our operations to carry out our program and services to the community.”
The cost of the levy is about $35 per $100,000 assessed home value, which represents no change in the levy amount currently in place.
Guillozet reminded voters that none of the COVID-19 response expenses have come out of locally generated tax dollars, but instead came from the federal government.
He added- “Because these dollars came from the federal government, we were able to continue on with our food inspections, WIC and Help Me Grow program for young children.”
Guillozet says when talking about the health district renewal levy, he often gets questions about drug overdose programs, and whether the health district is buying Narcan with local tax payer money, to which he said- “We do not do that. We use grant funding specific to the opioid response program. We have a great partnership with other entities who have worked on grants with us, (that go toward those expenses.)”
Do view our Litter Media Live Special Edition interview with Garrett Guillozet, CLICK HERE:
(Chillicothe) – The Ross County Health District and Adena Health System are urging for more caution concerning the recent spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Since the original letter, area medical systems have added their names to the community plea. It now includes: Adena Health System, Fairfield Medical Center, Hocking Valley Community Hospital, Holzer Health System, Madison Health, Memorial Health System, OhioHealth and Southern Ohio Medical Center
The following is a letter to the community, sent out by the Ross County Health District on September 10th:
Take a moment and think back to what life in Ross County was like a year ago. What you’ll probably remember is school children doing much of their learning online. You’ll recall cancelations of events that normally add to the quality of life in this community. You may even remember when the Ross County case count of COVID-19 first reached 100 cases in one day. Now, look at the current state of the county. More children are being required to quarantine due to a lack of universal COVID-19 precautions in schools even in light of modified quarantine procedures for schools. More children are testing positive for COVID-19. The vaccine is readily available yet only 47.3% of the county is fully vaccinated.
There’s a new variant, Delta, which is more transmissible and impacting those who are unvaccinated at an uncontrollable rate. All of this is putting a strain on healthcare facilities across the region. If you need medical attention, you may find yourself waiting longer than before for a room or a bed due to high patient volumes.
After a lull that as recently as July saw the number of pandemic-related hospitalizations within Adena Health System dropped to zero, the pandemic is spiking again. Ross County saw more than 800 cases of COVID-19 in August and presently sits at 713 cases at this point in September. There are more hospital admissions and beds being used for COVID-19 patients than at any previous point since the pandemic began. That means less bed availability to treat other serious conditions and strains on staffing and other valuable resources that are needed to provide both critical and routine care to yourself, your family and your friends. As of this morning, Adena had 64 COVID inpatients – 55 of those are unvaccinated, while only nine are vaccinated. The hospital is also caring for eight COVID ICU patients – six unvaccinated/two vaccinated – and six COVID patients on a ventilator – four unvaccinated/two vaccinated.
It doesn’t have to be that way. The Ross County Health District and Adena Health System are counting on each member of the community to join the effort to defeat the virus, taking action to both stay safe themselves and protect their loved ones, friends and neighbors. That includes getting vaccinated and staying home if you feel sick – even if you think you have allergies.
“Hospitalizations locally and across the state are increasing at an alarming rate putting strain on healthcare infrastructure and a workforce that has been fighting this virus on the frontlines for over 18 months,” said Adena Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Kirk Tucker. “About 98% of the COVID-19 hospitalizations in Ohio this year have been among those not fully vaccinated. COVID-19 vaccines continue to be our safest and most reliable means of alleviating pressure on our hospitals and healthcare providers. Vaccination is without any doubt your best bet, regardless of your age, to avoid getting severely ill with COVID-19 and avoid lasting complications. So we urge you to get the vaccine if you have not done so already. The COVID-19 vaccines were thoroughly researched and properly developed. They are safe. They are effective. And they save lives.”
The Delta variant has proven particularly challenging for Ross County schools, which are seeing increases in cases resulting from both classroom and extracurricular activities. There were 206 positive cases among Ross County students and staff as of September 8. Last school year, there were 211 total student cases.
The spread of the Delta variant is also troublesome as it has shown the ability to infect more individuals in less time than the original strain of COVID-19. As a result, the Ross County Health District is seeing more close contacts becoming positive cases now than in any previous month.
“We are gravely concerned about the ongoing surge of cases within our community,” said Health Commissioner Garrett Guillozet. “Our community must come together to help ease the burden on our local health system and to ensure that we are working to protect each other from COVID-19. We know that public health mitigation strategies work, and the vaccines remain effective against the Delta variant.”
Positive cases will be contacted by the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) or the Ross County Health District (RCHD) to complete a contact tracing interview. It is important for those in our community to answer these calls and complete the interview so those who may have been exposed to the virus can be notified.
There are several ways you can take action to reduce exposure of COVID-19, including:
– Getting vaccinated.
– Wearing a mask, regardless of vaccination status.
– Social distancing when possible.
– Staying home if you are sick.
– Completing contact tracing interviews.
We understand that everyone is tired and is looking forward to getting back to a “normal” life, one with safe attendance at ballgames and birthday parties, festivals and family gatherings. That power rests with each of you.
For the nurses, respiratory therapists, doctors, and other healthcare providers caring for our community, and on behalf of our public health nurses, health educators, environmental health professionals, and other staff working every day in response to the pandemic, we appreciate each one of you. We’re all tired, but we need to continue to support each other in an effort to end this pandemic.
If you have questions on isolation and quarantine guidelines, testing, contact tracing, or vaccines, please reach out to RCHD or your healthcare provider.
Area health departments are administering third COVID-19 Pfizer & Moderna vaccines to those with low immunity due . The CDC & U.S. FDA are recommending a 3rd dose be given to those who are immunocompromised.
Ross County Health District, Pickaway County Public Health and Pike County Health District are offering third doses to those who meet eligibility at all future Health Department run clinics.
The purpose of the third dose is to strengthen the immune response to those included in the following categories:
Individuals undergoing active treatment for cancer.
Individuals who have received a solid organ transplant and are taking immunosuppressive therapy.
Indivduals who have received Car-T-Cell hematopoietic stem cell transplant (within 2 years of transplant).
Individuals with moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency.
Individuals with advanced or untreated HIV infection.
Individuals undergoing active treatment with high dose corticosteroids.
Ross County’s Health District Office and Pike County are offering the third shots at their walk-in clinics to those eligible beginning August 17th, 2021 while Pickaway Public Health starts on August 18th, 2021.
85 of Ohio’s 88 counties have moved to the highest level red in the CDC’s data tracker for high levels of community transmission of COVID-19, as of Monday August 16th.
The updated map from the U.S. Center for Disease Control continues to show a steady increase in the number of counties now in the high transmission category.
In Ohio, masks are recommended if a county is in either orange or red. The other three Ohio counties not in red are now orange.
In a press conference Tuesday, Governor Mike DeWine reiterated state recommendations (not mandates) for everyone age 12 and older to get the COVID-19 vaccination and for individuals to wear masks when indoors with large groups of people, whether vaccinated or not. The mask recommendation was especially emphasized for the non-vaccinated.
Governor DeWine stated the following- “On July 7, our cases were at 17 cases statewide per 100,000 people for a two-week period. Today, that number is 236 per 100,000 people. Every county in the state is considered a high incidence county.” He added- “Today there are 1,571 of our fellow citizens hospitalized in Ohio with COVID-19. This is the highest since last February. Additionally, there are 464 people in ICUs in Ohio w/ COVID. This is the highest number, again, since February.”
“The spread of the delta variant has dramatically accelerated since we last held a public briefing 10 days ago. We are at the highest number of new cases since February,” said DeWine. “We are reiterating the recommendation from 10 days ago, get vaccinated or wear a mask while in the classroom. These steps will give them the best the chance of staying in school.”
Children under age 12 years-old are still not approved by the FDA to receive the vaccine. Studies are being conducted to see if students under age 12 can take the shot without any adverse health issues.
“We are clearly well past the time when the state can mandate to parents and school districts what actions to take. These decisions today rest with the parents and school officials.”
One week prior, Ross County Health Commissioner Garrett Guillozet stated the county had 121 positive cases of COVID-19 reported to RCHD. He added that this report “will not match other COVID-19 dashboards because other dashboards (including Ohio Department of Health) are based on onset of symptoms date, not reported positive test date.”
(CHILLICOTHE) – The best defense against the spread of COVID-19 in our communities is vaccination. With the return of a full slate of Ross County Fair activities this week and the accompanying crowds following a one-year hiatus in 2020 because of the virus, having convenient access to that defense is important.
Toward that end, Adena Health System and the Ross County Health District are partnering to make free vaccinations available to fairgoers. Adena is administrating the one dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine for those 18 and older from 4 to 8 p.m. Monday (August 9), Wednesday (August 11) and Friday (August 13), at a booth in the northwest corner of the Multipurpose Building at the Ross County Fairgrounds. For parents wishing to have their children ages 12 to 17 vaccinated, the Ross County Health District will be administrating the Pfizer vaccine to that age range from 12 to 4 p.m. on Tuesday (August 10) and Thursday (August 12).
With the recent surge of the Delta variant of COVID-19 spreading across the country, Adena and the Ross County Health District want to make sure getting the vaccine is as convenient as possible – part of the important role each organization plays in caring for the health of our communities. The trio of available COVID-19 vaccines have proven effective against the virus, including the Delta variant, in reducing serious illness, hospitalizations and deaths.
So while you’re enjoying the fair food, entertainment and 4-H competition at the 2021 Ross County Fair, we encourage you to take a few minutes to stop by the Multipurpose Building and take that key step in protecting your health that will last long after the final midway ride has been taken. Also remember to wash your hands frequently and maintain social distancing as much as possible as you enjoy the week.
Area health departments are working with local schools to get as many students and staff vaccinated as possible against COVID-19, before school gets into full swing.
The Pickaway County Public Health is partnering with Nationwide Children’s Hospital to get K-12 students up to date on their vaccines. Nationwide Children’s Hospital Mobile Vaccine clinic: August 9th and 10th from 8:45am-2:30pm. Call the health department at (740) 477-9667 to schedule and for more details.
The Ross County Health District is working with several schools to provide onsite clinics for the students, staff, teachers, and anyone who would like to get vaccinated. They have a clinic Thursday, August 5th at Chillicothe High School from 6pm-8pm. Additionally, they are working to schedule a clinic for Zane Trace and Huntington school districts and are willing to do likewise for other Ross County schools wanting the same access. Ross Health also has walk-in appointments available at their office.
As of Tuesday in Pike County, they reported on their Facebook site that the health department was having current communication issues. “We have had an influx of phone calls for requests for vaccine appointments and additional calls for COVID-19 information from newly diagnosed patients and their contacts. Today, our phone lines crashed for reasons currently unknown. We have a possible ETA fix for tomorrow (Wednesday) afternoon. In the meantime for the public, we have a 24/7 emergency answering service, private messenger through social media, and email at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
For other area counties, contact your local health department for details.
(COLUMBUS) – The Ross County Health District has found new ways to address vaccine hesitancy in the homeless population within their community.
RCHD has begun bringing COVID-19 vaccinations directly to homeless encampments throughout the county. Along with vaccinations, RCHD employees are also providing the homeless population with Naloxone, mosquito/bug spray, hygiene kits, food, and clean water.
“It was important to us to bring other resources to the encampments, not just COVID-19 vaccines,” said RCHD Health Commissioner Garrett Guillozet. “There is a high level of hesitancy, and we wanted to utilize the opportunity of the visit to provide additional wraparound services.”
RCHD has also provided onsite clinics at local free-meal and food pantries in their area, and will continue to provide these clinics on a weekly basis to help better reach otherwise underserved populations in their community. Around 25 people have received vaccinations through these efforts.
All Ohioans age 12 and older are currently eligible to be vaccinated. Ohioans can find additional vaccination opportunities and schedule appointments by visiting gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov or by calling 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634). Walk-in appointments are available at many providers statewide. Anyone with questions regarding COVID-19 vaccination within the state of Ohio can learn more at coronavirus.ohio.gov/vaccine.
(Chillicothe) – The Ross County Health District and partners will be hosting a bicycle rodeo on June 27, 2021.
This family friendly event will provide bicycle education for all age groups, teaching how to safely ride a bicycle for both recreation and active transportation. If the bicycle rodeo course is completed, participants will be entered into a raffle to win a free bicycle provided by the CHC program; there will be four bicycles given away.
The first 145 people to register at the day of the event will receive a free helmet provided by the County Parks District and funded through American Pediatrics.
Other partners will be providing giveaways such as coloring books, bicycle equipment, etc. and conducting activities for participants to partake in. For example, the sheriff department will be conducting the fingerprint station for children and the library will be hosting a bicycle themed arts and crafts booth. It is encouraged to bring a bicycle to complete the obstacle course, but it is not necessary.
Date & Location
Sunday, June 27, 2021 1 – 4 PM Registration is at Yoctangee Park’s Kiwanis Shelter House
Ross County Creating Healthy Communities Program (CHC) • Ross County Mobility Management Program • Ross County Tobacco Program • Chillicothe and Ross County Public Library • Ross County Sheriff Department • Chillicothe City Police Department • Ross County Parks District • Chillicothe Parks and Recreation Department •Chillicothe Kiwanis Club • Ross County YMCA • Chillicothe McDonald’s • Ross County Home Visiting Program • Ross County Project DAWN • Ross County National Interscholastic Cycling Association (NICA) • Chillicothe Trails