$22.6 million will provide $200,000 in flexible funding to each of Ohio’s 113 local health departments to continue to fund response activities and conduct pandemic relief work. If approved by the Controlling Board, ODH will award these funds so that a local health department can immediately utilize the funding to address the community’s COVID containment needs. This funding will allow LHDs to surge resources to contain the current increase of COVID cases and for planned COVID containment expenses during this final quarter of calendar year 2020. LHDs will not need to submit an additional application to access the funds, but response work should be conducted by local health departments in coordination with local COVID Defense Teams.
Up to $7.4 million will be used by the Ohio Department of Health to contract for or temporarily hire qualified individuals to establish and manage a statewide network of epidemiologists and support staff. The Ohio Department of Health has the ability to recruit and hire these crucial staff quickly and to provide their services to support the work of local health departments. The pool will be directed to the areas most in need across the state at the request of local health departments and COVID defense teams, and redirected based on local surges of coronavirus cases.