Public Health


About two weeks after she tested positive for COVID-19, Jessica Young of Huber Heights got a call from Public Health Dayton and Montgomery County with a specific request. The stranger on the other end of the phone asked her to write down every person she had interacted with for the last two months.

“Anybody I had shaken hands with, sneezed around, sat next to more than 10 to 15 minutes,” she said. “Anybody I had deep conversations with that would keep me close to them for a long period of time.”  

Grocery stores such as Kroger around the United States are using signage, plexiglass barriers and other measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease COVID-19.
The Kroger Co.

The coronavirus pandemic has opened a divide between so-called “essential” workers and people who are able to work from home. The crisis is also shining a light on what some big United States retailers are doing to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

In Dayton, supermarkets are taking a host of measures designed to promote social distancing and keep shelves stocked and supply chains moving. They’re capping shopper numbers, enforcing one-way aisles and socially distanced checkout lines.

But some frontline supermarket workers say they still don’t feel safe on the job.

Montgomery County’s COVID-19 Hotline has operated for close to a month and has fielded over 4,000 calls.

Public Health’s Casey Smith says the call center has received questions about symptoms and testing, requests for PPE and social services, and complaints about businesses violating orders.

"This call center was set up so that we could answer all of your questions related to COVID-19, that we can provide you with timely and accurate information, and we will continue to serve you all so long as the need exists," Smith said.

Dr. Hemant Shah directs the Kettering Hospital COVID-19 Critical Response Team, along with the COVID-19 Critical Response Teams at Troy Medical Center and Sycamore Medical Center.
Hemant Shah / WYSO

As the United States coronavirus outbreak escalates, Ohio hospitals are taking new precautions to protect frontline health workers from unnecessary exposure to the highly infectious virus.

Doctors, nurses and other medical personnel are at especially high-risk of becoming sick with COVID-19. As the state prepares for a surge in cases, we hear from a longtime physician at the center of the crisis.

Greene County Public Health

Throughout this coronavirus crisis, officials have been repeating the same refrain over and over again. Stay at home. Stay away from other people. Wash your hands. Don’t touch your face. Stop this virus’s spread.

It turns out, this new normal comes from a very old playbook.

With a virus like this one, that’s mostly spread by droplets in the air, it’s when people come into close contact with each other that we’re able to get each other sick.

hospital room at the Medical Center at Elizabeth Place

The Greater Dayton Area Hospital Association has announced new visitation restrictions in response to the coronavirus outbreak. The new rules take effect Friday, March 20, and include mandatory screening of all patients and visitors for virus symptoms, and for their travel and exposure history.

The changes affect Kettering, Premier, and Dayton Children’s hospital facilities in counties with confirmed cases of COVID-19.

Foodbanks are ramping up emergency food distribution during the Coronavirus crisis.
Jess Mador / WYSO

Editor's note: this story has been changed to reflect updated information released March 17 by Dayton Public Schools: 


Emergency food distribution is underway across the Miami Valley. Assistance is available to individuals, and to families with children home from school during the state-mandated Coronavirus shutdown, ordered by Gov. Mike DeWine Thursday.

Emily Mendenhall and her family employ more than 50 people at two restaurants in Dayton.
Jess Mador / WYSO

Restaurants and bars across the Miami Valley are preparing for what could be an indefinite shutdown. On Sunday in an effort to slow the spread of Coronavirus, Gov. Mike DeWine temporarily banned sitdown service.

The order allows takeout and delivery to continue. And it extends unemployment benefits to affected workers without paid leave. And many business owners in Dayton’s restaurant industry are urging workers to take advantage of the help.

Toilet paper sold quickly Thursday at a market in Yellow Springs.
Neenah Ellis / WYSO

Many Miami Valley supermarkets are seeing long lines and empty shelves amid mounting concerns over the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Earlier this week Gov. Mike DeWine ordered all public and private K-12 schools across the state to close beginning Monday for three weeks, affecting hundreds of thousands of Ohio students.

As Dayton-area families prepare for the shutdown, Oakwood Dorothy Lane Market store director Jerry Post says the chain’s more than 800 employees are working overtime to replace items as they sell out.

Health officials in Butler County are monitoring two possible cases of the highly contagious coronavirus that was first identified in China. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed five cases of the disease in the US, but none so far in the state of Ohio.