Coronavirus: 10 million masks to be mailed to Ohioans 65 and older

Michelle Buford, a facilities Specialist for the city of Dayton, helped to pass out masks near Kettering Fields. The mask are free of charge. MARSHALL GORBY\STAFF

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Michelle Buford, a facilities Specialist for the city of Dayton, helped to pass out masks near Kettering Fields. The mask are free of charge. MARSHALL GORBY\STAFF

More than 10 million disposable face masks will be mailed to Ohioans ages 65 and older this month, along with information about staying healthy throughout the winter months.

Five masks will be sent to the 2.1 million senior Ohioans through the 10 Million Mask Mailer, a project formed by the Ohio Department of Aging and Ohio Department of Health with support from the Ohio Department of Administrative Services. Funding for the masks was provided by CARES Act funds.

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“The science is clear: Wearing a mask that covers your nose and mouth helps protect you and those around you from COVID-19,” said Ursel McElroy, director of the ODA. “We are thankful for the fast work of our partners at the Department of Administrative Services to get these mailers into the hands of the most at-risk Ohioans in response to the current surge in cases and over the holidays.”

Ohioans receiving the masks were identified through the ODA’s Golden Buckeye Program. Teams are working assemble the packages, which will include five disposable masks and information on coronavirus prevention.

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“As Ohio confronts coronavirus on many different fronts it will be important to keep wearing masks, one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of the virus,” said Matt Damschroder, director of the Department of Administrative Services. “We were happy to play a key role in this effort.”

The 10 Million Mask Mailer is the second phase in Ohio’s plan to distribute masks directly to older residents. During the Thanksgiving holiday, agencies gave out masks to those in community living settings.

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