Ohio’s Governor has asked churchgoers to wear masks and social distance, after a 56-year-old man with coronavirus infected at least 91 other people across five counties after attending a single service on 14 June.
Governor Mike DeWine posted a colour graphic on his Facebook page to illustrate how far the virus had spread by 4 July writing, “All it takes is one person to cause tremendous #COVID19 spread.”
The graphic shows how 53 people who attended the service became ill and 18 of those passed the virus onto at least one other person.
Ohio's governor has since urged people of all religions to wear masks while attending services. On 22 July he also made it mandatory for those who are 10 and over to wear face coverings and on Wednesday he made it compulsory for school children to wear masks, with a few exceptions.
He wrote on Twitter that he would be sending a letter out to Ohio’s faith based community to share important health information to protect worshippers.
Today, I am sending a letter to Ohio’s faith-based community to share important health information with our churches, synagogues, and mosques and to share ways to better protect their worshipers.— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) August 4, 2020
"It is vital that, any time people gather together, everyone wear masks, practice social distancing, wash hands, and while indoors, making sure there is good ventilation and airflow," he said.
On Thursday DeWine took a corovavirus test prior to a meeting with President Trump in Cleveland. He tested positive at first but after taking a second test his results came back as negative.
UPDATE: In a second COVID-19 test administered today in Columbus, Governor Mike DeWine has tested negative for COVID-19. First Lady Fran DeWine and staff members have also all tested negative. pic.twitter.com/0Ixap90mJg— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) August 7, 2020
At the time of publication 98,694 people in Ohio have tested positive for Covid-19 so far and 3,661 people have died, according to data from the Worldometer.