Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb announced more steps Monday to halt the spread of the coronavirus just as word broke of the first death from the virus in the Hoosier state.
According to state health officials, the patient was a Marion County adult. They died at a Community Health Network hospital on Monday morning. The person, who was over age 60, had been hospitalized as a COVID-19 patient and also suffered from underlying medical conditions. No further information was released about the patient or the case.
In the interim state officials said to combat and slow the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) it would require bars and nightclubs and restaurants to close to in-person patrons.
Governor Holcomb is announcing the following efforts today.
- Indiana will adhere to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for large events and mass gatherings. The guidance recommends no in-person events of more than 50 people. Here is a link to the guidance: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/large-events/mass-gatherings-ready-for-covid-19.html
- Under the current guidance for schools, 273 public school districts are closed, using e-learning days, or on spring break and have announced a future closure. The Department of Education is working with the remaining 16 school corporations to determine their next steps and needs
- Bars, nightclubs and restaurants are required to close to in-person patrons and may provide take-out and delivery services through the end of March
- Hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers should cancel and/or postpone elective and non-urgent surgical procedures immediately. This action will help the healthcare system conserve resources and personnel necessary to meet emerging health needs
- Physicians should continue to perform critical procedures necessary to prevent short-term and/or long-term adverse effects to their patients’ overall health
- The state’s Emergency Operations Center has been raised to a Level 1 status and will work in conjunction with the incident command center at the Indiana State Department of Health for planning, coordination, predictive analysis and other functions
- State employees will maximize the use of remote work and meet virtually whenever possible while maintaining operations. Non-essential in-person meetings will be limited to 10 persons or less and should meet virtually whenever possible. High-risk individuals should not attend meetings in person
- State employees over the age of 60 with underlying health conditions are advised to work from home, and agencies should identify work that can be accomplished remotely for those individuals
- The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites, which are closed on Mondays, will close to the public beginning Tuesday
- The visitors center at White River State Park will close
- Indiana state parks and recreation centers, including state park inns, remain open. Restaurants will convert operations to take-out and delivery
- State agencies already are developing remote work plans for employees and will continue to implement them while maintaining necessary state services. Employees who work outdoors are encouraged to practice social distancing
- The Department of Workforce Development (DWD) has suspended rules requiring certain unemployment insurance claimants to physically appear at a Work One location to engage in reemployment services for the next four weeks. This will ensure that individuals who may be symptomatic do not have to physically appear to continue their unemployment insurance eligibility
- The DWD will also request flexibility under federal and state law to expand eligibility for claimants and ease burdens on employers.
- The Indiana Economic Development Corporation will postpone the inaugural Indiana Global Economic Summit, scheduled for April 26-28
- Communities are encouraged to work together to provide child care options for all who need assistance and delivery services of meals and other necessities for senior citizens
- Hoosiers who can donate blood are encouraged to visit local blood centers. Blood supplies are low. Please follow the guidance at www.redcross.org
More information may be found at the ISDH website at https://on.in.gov/COVID19 and the CDC website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.
You can hear the Governor as well as other state and public health officials in the Leon-Tailored Audio above.
Each segment runs for about 20 minutes.