Oklahoma is scheduled to rollout Phase Two of “re-opening our state” amid the coronavirus crisis on May 15. Governor Kevin Stitt held an update Thursday and said “Oklahoma is better when we all work together.”
It’s welcome news for some businesses planning to re-open, including Rustic Farm on Luther’s Main Street.
Governor Stitt said Thursday that the state is not seeing a surge in hospitalizations and it’s time to move on to Phase 2 while noting that Mercy Hospital has laid off more than 1,000 employees.
“Oklahomans are about freedom and courage and protecting themselves and their families.”OK Governor Kevin Stitt
Phase Two Individual guidance:
• Continue following safer-at-home guidelines if they are over 65 or part of a vulnerable population
• Maintain social distancing from others when in public
• Avoid socializing in groups that do not readily allow for appropriate social distancing
• Consider resuming non-essential travel
• Close common areas or enforce social distancing and sanitation protocols
• Honor requests of personnel who are members of a vulnerable population for special accommodations
• Employers are recommended to implement social distancing protocols, which include proper sanitation and use of protective equipment when interacting with the public
Specific Employer guidance:
• Organized sports activities can reopen and operate under proper social distancing and sanitation protocols
• Visits to Senior Care Facilities and Hospitals should still be prohibited
• Bars can operate with diminished standing-room occupancy, where applicable and appropriate, and under social distancing and sanitation protocols.
• Funerals and weddings can resume under social distancing protocols
• Children’s nursery areas in places of worship can reopen
If hospital & incident rates remain at a manageable level for 14 days, we move to Phase 3
As for the Thursday numbers, reported positive cases are up by 110 to a total 4,962.
There are six additional deaths; three of them occurred in the past 24 hours and the others died between May 4-May 11.
- Two in Oklahoma County, a male in the 65 and older age group and a female in the 65 and older age group.
- Two in Cleveland County, both males in the 65 and older age group.
- One in Comanche County, a male in the 50-64 age group.
- One in Washington County, a female in the 65 and older age group.
There are 284 total deaths in the state and only 217 hospitalized statewide.
Locally, still only one confirmed and reported case exists in Luther.
Perusing the available data on Thursday, cases remain in the single digits for the most part for all of our neighboring small towns.
The Oklahoma State Department of Health said resources are going to the panhandle of the state to cope with an outbreak at a pork production plant.
“Over the past week, OSDH has deployed several systems of support into Texas County and the surrounding areas to address a heightened presence of COVID-19. The largest employer in the county, Seaboard Foods, has been a good partner with state agencies by allowing OSDH to test all processing plant employees,” said Health Commissioner Gary Cox. “We are also partnering on guidance and solutions to ensure the company continues doing everything possible to protect its workers. Over the next few days, we expect spikes in our reporting of positive cases due to the significant number of tests processed for Texas County, which is reflective of our increased testing efforts.”