N95 mask

The N95 mask.

Editor's Note: This article was written in response to a question submitted through Open Source.  Several readers asked which restaurant was the one mentioned by the governor on Thursday during his press conference.)

MANSFIELD -- Gov. Mike DeWine on Thursday -- when explaining numbers that moved Richland County into the "red" category -- cited COVID-19 issues with a local restaurant.

It didn't take long for Richland Source readers to ask which restaurant the governor was talking about when explaining why the county was being moved to level three in the state's four-level Public Health Advisory System.

The move makes facial masks mandatory in public Friday at 6 p.m.

Richland Public Health Commissioner Sarah Humphrey, while saying the name of the restaurant is not public record, said Friday those concerned with the restaurant's name may miss the bigger picture.

"Residents need to realize that asymptomatic rate of COVID-19 in the community can be quite high and that we should treat all public environments and encounters as potential transmission opportunities," Humphrey said. "That is why social distancing and mask use is so critical right now.

"Gina's pinochle party, the outdoor market, or Jeff and Karen's anniversary shindig can all be opportunities to catch COVID-19. Make smart decisions and realize that we are all part of the solution to this public health emergency."

She said any food service/food retail establishment that has two or more COVID-19 cases associated with during a given period of time is defined as an "outbreak" by the Ohio Department of Health.

HUmphrey said RPH responded to the site.

"Whenever cases are identified, the protocols are that the individual is isolated for the duration of their illness and all direct contacts (within six feet for 15 min or more) are quarantined for 14 days. The environment is thoroughly sanitized," she said.

The governor also mentioned issues with "multiple nursing homes" in the county. Humphrey said the ODH website shows just one Richland County site with current cases. Wedgewood Estates, an assisted living center, currently has three residents who have tested positive and three staff members.

Five nursing homes or long-term care facilities in the county are listed on the ODH website as having positive tests for COVID-19 since the pandemic began in March. Those cases are no longer active.

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City editor. 30-year plus journalist. Husband. Father of 3 grown sons and also a proud grandpa. Prior military journalist in U.S. Navy, Ohio Air National Guard. -- Favorite quote: "Where were you when the page was blank?"