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As a new strain of coronavirus (COVID-19) swept through the world in 2020, preparedness plans, masking policies and more public policy changed just as quickly. WVXU has covered the pandemic's impact on the Tri-State from the very beginning, when on March 3, 2020, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine barred spectators from attending the Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus over concerns about the virus, even though Ohio had yet to confirm a single case of COVID-19.

Mayor Cranley Issues Self-Isolation Order For Those Infected With COVID-19

Courtesy of
City of Cincinnati
Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley conducting Friday's COVID-19 press briefing at Cincinnati City Hall.

Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley on Friday issued a new emergency order related to the coronavirus outbreak. 

This one relates to self-isolation for people who have COVID-19.

"It is hereby ordered that any person who has tested positive for COVID-19, been diagnosed with COVID-19 by a medical health professional, or who has reason to believe they have COVID-19, shall self-isolate at the person's place of residence for 14 days following the onset of symptoms or diagnosis, whichever is later, or until a medical health professional finds the person is no longer capable of communicating COVID-19 to others," the order stated.

People affected by the order may leave their residences "only to engage in life-sustaining activities, such as acquiring medication or food."

The order also requires a person with COVID-19 who are interacting with first responders to share that information, so those responders can take necessary safety measures.

And it prohibits anyone from falsely reporting that they or another person have the virus.

The city's health commissioner said Friday there are 145 positive cases inside city limits.  There have been three deaths in the city and 38 patients have recovered.

Cranley said it's good news that the number of overflow beds that could be needed at the Duke Energy Convention Center is being reduced. The original projection called for more than 500, now The Health Collaborative announced Friday it will start at about 150.

"The efforts to engage in prevention have reduced and flattened the curve," Cranley said. "And there are less people getting sick than originally predicted. And that is something to be grateful for as we head into Easter weekend."

Cranley said we're "not out of the woods yet" when it comes to the virus, and he doesn't want to declare victory too early.

He said he hopes the local economy can open soon, but he said things will have to be done differently even when that happens.

"We're going to have to wear masks that none of us really want to wear but have to get used to," Cranley said. "We're going to have to wash our hands more, we're going to have to use gloves, and we're going to try to need to stay six feet apart probably for a good amount of time. And frankly, I think that's going to be necessary as we slowly reopen the economy, which I know everybody wants to do."

Meanwhile, the mayor is asking city residents to participate in the #StayHomeCincy challenge.  It's a social media campaign where people can use their creativity to show the ways they're having fun at home during the crisis.

Cranley's son, Joseph, used TikTok, to make a video that the mayor shared during Friday's city press briefing.

Jay Hanselman brings more than 10 years experience as a news anchor and reporter to 91.7 WVXU. He came to WVXU from WNKU, where he hosted the local broadcast of All Things Considered. Hanselman has been recognized for his reporting by the Kentucky AP Broadcasters Association, the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and the Ohio AP Broadcasters.