Social distancing doesn’t mean you’re alone

By Branden Jackman - For The Times-Gazette

We have had so many conversations over the last several weeks on how to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic or how to slow its spread so we could flatten the curve. Let’s talk about social distancing.

We should have named it more appropriately physical distancing. We want people to stay a certain distance from each other. We don’t want anyone to feel isolated or cut off from loved ones and the rest of the world.

It’s normal as we face the coronavirus to have feelings of anxiety, stress, anger and isolation, and even depression.

During the governor’s press conference, and in conversations we have had with providers from Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health, your mental health is just as important as your physical health. While we talk about washing your hands, please also maintain scheduled visits for mental health. Telehealth, text and phone services are available should you need a prescription refill. While you cover your cough, remember it’s just as important to stay on schedule with your medications.

We’ve stressed as we get closer to the surge that we are all in this together. If you are feeling depressed, isolated, lonely, or are thinking about hurting yourself, please know the mental health system stands poised to help as well.

Here are some resources to have handy should you find yourself needing a little help during the pandemic:

Highland County Crisis Line: 937-393-9904

National Suicide Prevention: 800-273-8255

Ohio Crisis Text Line: text 4HOPE to 741-741

To find resources in your area: 877-275-6364

If there is any good news to be had, Highland County stayed stable Friday at four confirmed cases in the county. We have approximately 15 to 20 others pending outcome of tests. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for the state. Statewide we now have 895 hospitalized. Of those, 288 are in intensive care and 91 lost their fight with COVID-19. Let’s keep washing those hands, covering that cough, not touching your face, and staying home if you are sick. Every little bit helps flatten the curve.

We’re all in this together, be nice.

Branden Jackman, is the public information officer for the Highland County Emergency Operations Center.

By Branden Jackman

For The Times-Gazette