Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb announced Monday he’s ordering Hoosiers to stay home amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
“The next two weeks are critical if we are to slow the spread of COVID-19, and we must slow the spread. You must be part of the solution, not the problem,” Holcomb said.
He’s asked Hoosiers to stay home except when they are at work or for permitted activities, such as taking care of others, obtaining necessary supplies, and for health and safety.
The order is in effect from March 25 to April 7.
“I’m setting the example by sending state government personnel home to work to the maximum extent possible and closing our facilities to public interaction beginning Tuesday, for at least the next two weeks.”
Indiana follows surrounding states Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio who have also issued stay-at-home orders.
Beginning Tuesday, all state government offices will be closed to in-person public activity until at least April 7. This includes the Government Center complex in Indianapolis and other offices throughout the state, including Bureau of Motor Vehicle branches. State employees will work remotely whenever possible and continue to provide core functions online and by phone. All public safety functions will continue.
In conjunction with the closures, Holcomb ordered an automatic extension of all state-issued licenses and will advise law enforcement to refrain from issuing citations for a driver’s license or registration that expires during this emergency.
The state has activated a comprehensive emergency operations center to maximize hospital capacity and provide joint coordination. The center is charged with tracking the inventory of all hospital beds, supplies and personnel as the number of COVID-19 patients grows.
“I am proud of our hospital systems that are participating in the initial phase of this process, Eskenazi Health, IU Health, Franciscan Health, Community Health Network, and Ascension,” said Gov. Holcomb. “Marion County is where we’ve seen the most community spread to date, but we will expand this model to other parts of the state.”
Considered essential business and services are grocery stores, pharmacies, gas stations, police/fire stations, hospitals, doctor’s offices, health care facilities, garbage pickup and public transit.
On Monday, the state reported 58 new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing to 259 the number of Hoosiers diagnosed through ISDH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and private laboratories.
The death toll is now at 7 Hoosiers.
The first positive case of COVID-19 in Indiana was reported on March 6. Since then the number of positive cases has increased on a near daily basis, escalating as the capacity to test has grown. A total of 1,960 tests have been reported to ISDH to date.
Marion County had the most new cases, at 28. In fact, three other counties that abut Marion County, which includes Indianapolis, have 177 of the 259 cases in the state. Locally, Lake County has the most cases in Northwest Indiana at 11.
Hoosier physicians applaud Holcomb’s ‘Stay at Home’ order
INDIANAPOLIS — Hoosier physicians applauded Gov. Eric Holcomb for his “Stay at Home” order as well as other measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 on Monday.
The order runs from March 25 to April 7.
Dr. Lisa Hatcher, MD, president of the Indiana State Medical Association, issued the following statement:
“Indiana’s physicians are on the front lines in the COVID-19 pandemic, leading medical teams that are working around the clock to prevent the virus while treating other patients,” Hatcher said. “We applaud the actions taken by Gov. Holcomb to help contain the spread, which has continued to put greater stress on our health care system. Now it’s up to the citizens of Indiana to do their part. Given the limited supplies necessary to protect health care workers and patients with COVID-19, staying home is the only way Hoosiers can prevent becoming infected with the coronavirus and overwhelming our hospitals.
“The Indiana State Medical Association is grateful that Gov. Holcomb is creating emergency operation centers around the state to monitor the response to COVID-19 and inventory medical supplies and medical personnel needs so that health care professionals have the equipment and staff necessary to overcome this pandemic.”