DeWine updates nursing home visitation

R-H Staff

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Governor Mike DeWine provided the following updates this week on Ohio’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Vaccination Appointment Booking

While most of Ohio’s current vaccine providers are quickly filling all vaccination appointments, some locations are seeing less demand for the vaccine. In response, Gov. DeWine announced that local health departments and hospitals that are having a hard time filling appointments with individuals who are currently eligible for the vaccine may book appointments with anyone 16 years old and older.

Currently, anyone age 40 or older is eligible to receive the vaccine. Eligibility will drop to any Ohioan age 16 and up beginning on March 29.

In Preble County, there are four current vaccination sites:

The Gym at Eagles Point, 307 N. Cherry St., Eaton. 937-472-0087 or visit

Walgreens, 1213 N. Barron St., Eaton. 937-456-2694 or

CVS Pharmacy 6145, 1300 N. Barron St., Eaton. 888-300-4419 or

Camden Village Pharmacy, 75 W. Central Ave., Camden. 937-453-1263 or

7,488 total doses of the COVID-19 vaccine (3,757 Moderna, 3,424 Pfizer and 307 Johnson & Johnson) have been distributed by Preble County Public Health. Vaccinations numbers are not available for other providers.

For more information about Ohio’s vaccination plan, visit

Nursing Home/Assisted Living Visitation

The Ohio Department of Health will issue an updated order related to assisted living facilities and nursing homes. The general visitation requirements will remain the same, including the requirement that visitors schedule appointments in advance, are screened at the door, and wear masks. Changes to the order include:

Ohio is requiring that visitation be permitted whenever safety protocols can be met. Previously, visitation was permitted, not required;

Vaccinated residents may have physical touch with their visitor while wearing a mask. Previously, touch was discouraged;

Visits may occur in a resident’s private room, as opposed to the previous requirement of a separate visitation area;

30 minutes should serve as the minimum amount of time for a visit. Previously, 30 minutes was the maximum time to visit.

The order will also expand the circumstances in which compassionate care visits should be granted.

In addition, the order will update nursing home and assisted living testing requirements to require the facilities to test vaccinated staff once per week and unvaccinated staff twice per week. The previous order made no distinction between vaccinated or unvaccinated staff.

“We must continue regularly testing for the virus,” said Governor DeWine. “It’s just good science, and it will help us identify cases early and prevent the spread. Further, if COVID is controlled, that means less disruption to visitation.”

Certain circumstances, such as a facility outbreak, may necessitate that visitation be restricted on a case-by-case basis. Nursing homes must also continue following federal regulations from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Current Case Data

As of Thursday, March 25, there are 1,006,171 (+10,386) confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 reported in Ohio and 18,382 (+390) confirmed and probable COVID-19 deaths. A total of 52,539 (+546) people have been hospitalized throughout the pandemic, including 7,369 (+57) admissions to intensive care units. Ohio currently has 146.9 cases per 100,000 residents. In-depth data can be accessed by visiting

R-H Staff