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More Ventilators, PPE Could Soon Reach Dayton Health Workers, First Responders

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Eye On Ohio

Miami Valley hospitals could soon receive more ventilators and other emergency supplies to help in the coronavirus outbreak.

On Monday, the state Office of Budget and Management cleared the way for nearly $174 million in federal relief spending, allowing some state agencies to start using funds from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security or CARES Act.

The ventilators are needed, says Shereen Bailey, president of the Ohio Society for Respiratory Care representing around 8,700 respiratory care professionals in the state, because critically ill COVID-19 patients often need help breathing.

“The problem with the coronavirus is that patients sometimes get a condition called ARDS, which is acute respiratory distress syndrome and that makes it where your lungs are very stiff," she says. "So it makes it where it's really hard to breathe in and out and it's hard for oxygen to get into your blood.”

State officials also announced the departments of Health, and Public Safety would soon receive more N95 masks, gowns, face shields and other protective gear for first responders.

Ohio reports nearly 6,900 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the state. Health officials have confirmed 268 deaths and 2,033 hospitalizations related to the coronavirus.

Read more about the state of Ohio's response to the coronavirus pandemic here.