COVID funeral assistance line opens Monday

By Aimee Hancock

ahancock@aimmediamidwest.com

TROY — Beginning Monday, April 12, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will begin accepting applications for COVID-19-related funeral expenses.

According to Miami County Emergency Management Agency Director Joel Smith, who gave his weekly COVID-19 update to Miami County Commissioners Thursday, FEMA’s COVID-19 funeral assistance line number is (844) 684-6333, and the TTY number is (800) 462-7585. Hours of operation for this line are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Central Time.

In order to be eligible for funeral assistance, the following conditions must be met:

• The death must have occurred in the United States, including the US territories and District of Columbia.

• The death certificate must indicate the death was attributed to COVID-19.

• The applicant must be a US citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien who incurred funeral expenses after Jan. 20, 2020.

• There is no requirement for the deceased person to have been a US citizen, non-citizen national, or qualified alien.

This funeral assistance will cover up to $9,000 of incurred expenses per death. For more information, visit www.fema.gov/disasters/coronavirus/economic/funeral-assistance.

Smith also updated commissioners on vaccinations.

As of Wednesday, in the state of Ohio, 32.8 percent of residents have received at least the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. In Miami County, just over 31,000 residents, or 29.17 percent of the county’s population, have received at least the first dose. In the past week, 2,731 people received a vaccination in Miami County, and 18 percent of residents are now fully vaccinated.

To book a vaccine appointment, visit www.gettheshot.coronavirus.ohio.gov. For up-to-date information from the Miami County Health Department’s vaccine clinics, visit MCPH on Facebook.

According to Smith, schools and long-term care facilities are faring well with regard to COVID-19 cases.

“School case numbers continue to stay low. As of the last reporting period on the first of April, there were seven students and two staff at four different schools (who tested positive),” Smith said.

At long-term care facilities, as of Wednesday, there were no residents in a care facility within Miami County who tested positive.

Miami County is still within the “red” zone, according to the Ohio Department of Public Health’s Advisory System.