The availability of personal protective equipment (PPE) and other health and safety supplies during the coronavirus (COVID-19) state of emergency is having a significant impact on the health care system, first responders, providers, and families caring for Ohio’s medically at-risk population. The following guidance is for providers and Ohio county boards of developmental disabilities who need health and safety supplies.
First and foremost, providers, including intermediate care facilities (ICFs) and county boards, should always attempt to utilize their open marketplace contacts and suppliers as their first option to order enough supplies to mindfully plan for current and future needs.
In the event of an emergency, when providers are unable to locate or secure necessary supplies on their own in the marketplace, providers and ICFs may communicate their health and safety supply needs to their county boards. County boards will coordinate with providers and ICFs regarding the process to gather and submit the requests through one, or both, of these resources:
1. Local Emergency Management Agency (EMA)
Local EMAs are charged to submit supply requests to the state EMA for fulfillment. County Boards should coordinate with their local EMA regarding the process to gather and submit requests. Use this local EMA contact list.
Important: Local EMAs will need information to justify and prioritize resource requests to the State Emergency Operations Center. Example: If the needed equipment or supplies are not available from vendors (i.e., back order or a funding issue), please include that in a justification statement and explain why the stated quantity is being requested (i.e., number of masks per person multiplied by projected number of shifts that you don't have resources for) and you only have x number of usable masks on hand.
2. Cooperative Purchasing: Ohio Department of Administrative Services (DAS)
The Cooperative Purchasing Program offers Ohio counties and other political subdivisions the benefits and costs savings of buying goods and services through state contracts.
Many county board or their county board commissioners are already registered with the Ohio Department of Administrative Services (DAS) and its Cooperative Purchasing Program to utilize DAS contracts and receive the pricing negotiated by DAS for the contracted good and services.
If a county is not currently part of the Cooperative Purchasing Program, DAS will allow that county to make purchases under this program during this emergency situation. DAS will handle the registration paperwork on the back end afterward, if necessary. A current list of all counties and whether they are already registered can be found on Page 4 of the DODD Cooperative Purchasing Job Aid.
In addition, DAS has created a quick reference, List of State Contracts, specific to health and safety equipment supplier resources.
DODD has set up a dedicated web page for department communications and links to helpful resources that will advise people with disabilities, their families, service providers, direct support professionals, county boards of developmental disabilities, and the community at large.
For specific questions about COVID-19 and additional information and resources, DODD urges you to use the Ohio Department of Health’s call center. Call 1-833-4-ASK-ODH (1-833-427-5634), or visit coronavirus.ohio.gov.