Legislation introduced to inform Ohio first responders of possible COVID-19 exposure

State Rep introduces legislation to inform first responders of possible COVID-19 exposure

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - An Ohio state representative has introduced legislation that would require hospitals and health departments to inform first responders of possible exposure to COVID-19.

Rep. Haraz Ghanbari, a republican from Perrysburg, said he introduced the bill in response to an incident in Lucas County.

He told 19 News that a patient was transported by EMS for a non-Coronavirus issue, but later died of the virus.

“Those first responders found out about that through social media and other types of channels that are really non-conventional types of notifying folks," he said. “We need to make sure they’re not compromising the other first responders that are there with them,” he said.

He said this legislation is critical, given that our first responders have no choice but to continue working in the name of public safety.

“They need to be able to continue to respond to those calls when our communities call them for help," Ghanbari said.

“We are the front lines,” Cleveland Fire Chief Angelo Calvillo told 19 News on Sunday, when asked about the challenges of working through a pandemic. “We’re going to be coming to work every day to provide safety to the people.”

There’s no timetable for when the legislation will be put to a vote, as an official date to resume the House session has not been set.

Ghanbari was also a co-sponsor of the recent COVID-19 relief package signed into law by Gov. Mike DeWine.

“As we work to confront these challenges, it’s really about unity," Ghanbari said. "I firmly believe [that] we as a state will come out stronger on the other end of this.”

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