This article originally appeared on the Parsippany Patch
NEW JERSEY, – After being put on the spot during Governor Phil Murphy’s Tuesday novel coronavirus, or COVID-19 update, New Jersey State Police Colonel Patrick J. Callahan confirmed that there would be four field hospitals being opened in New Jersey to help combat the outbreak.
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About 10 minutes into the briefing, Murphy mentioned that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) reiterated its support for the field hospitals and turned it over to Callahan to elaborate.
The State Police top cop noted that FEMA was “enroute” and that three locations had been decided and a fourth would be determined later.
“One is going to be at the Meadowlands Exposition Center, another is going to be at the Convention Center in Edison, the third one will be set up in Atlantic City’s Convention Center,” Callahan said. “The fourth one will be housed periodically at our Urban Search and Rescue facility with that location to be determined at a later time once we are able to analyze the best and most effective place to set that up.”
These facilities, often erected after natural disasters where infrastructure is damaged, are constructed by the Army Corps of Engineers. The Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, SUNY Stony Brook, SUNY Old Westbury and the Westchester Convention Center were identified as locations in New York State.
Murphy noted the speed that these facilities were being setup is unprecedented and that each facility is expected to have 250 beds each.
Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said they have identified what their needs are.
“We know what supplies need, we’ve have identified the number of staff, the number of RNs, number of pharmacists,” she said noting that New Jersey will be divided into three regions: North, Central, South.
Persichilli said they’ve invited level 1 trauma centers to be coordinating agencies.
Here’s what else you should know:
State health officials said they believe the virus is “community-spread” in New Jersey. “Community-spread indicates that the coronavirus is amongst us,” Persichilli announced. Read more: Coronavirus May Be ‘Community-Spread’ In NJ
Murphy issued a stay-at-home order, closing all non-essential business at 9 p.m. Saturday, March 21. Read more: Gov. Murphy Announces NJ ‘Stay-At-Home’ Order Due To Coronavirus
On Monday, March 16, Murphy announced that all schools would close on Tuesday, March 17. Read more: NJ Schools Will Close Due To Coronavirus Outbreak: Gov. Murphy
Here are 10 resources for you and your family to utilize as you navigate through the outbreak: Unemployment, Tests, Food: 10 NJ Resources In Coronavirus Crisis
Murphy issued an executive order on Thursday, March 19 to ensure voters can exercise their right to vote without risking their health and safety. Read more: Coronavirus Alters NJ Election Procedure, Moves Election Dates
The first person in New Jersey to die of the coronavirus was reported on Tuesday, March 10. Read more: First NJ Coronavirus Death, 4 New Cases: Governor
New Jersey’s courts suspended all new jury trials until further notice, Chief Justice Stuart Rabner said on Thursday, March 12. Read more: Coronavirus Throws Monkey Wrench Into New Jersey Court System
State Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner announced on Saturday, March 14 that municipal court sessions will be suspended.
The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission said it’s also closing temporarily. Read more: New Jersey MVC Shuts Down Because Of Coronavirus
Four members of the same New Jersey family died from the coronavirus, according to March 19 reports. Read more: 4 In Same Family, Including 3 In NJ, Die Of Coronavirus: Reports
The deadline for Americans to file federal taxes was moved from April 15 to July 15, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin tweeted on Friday, March 20. Read more: Federal Tax Day Postponed To July 15 Amid Coronavirus Outbreak
How It Spreads
The virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading from person-to-person. Someone who is actively sick with COVID-19 can spread the illness to others. That is why CDC recommends that these patients be isolated either in the hospital or at home (depending on how sick they are) until they are better and no longer pose a risk of infecting others.
There is currently no vaccine for COVID-19.
While the best way to prevent illness is to avoid virus exposure, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention always recommends taking preventive actions to contain the spread of viruses.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
Stay home when you are sick.
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipes.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
Residents who have questions about the virus can contact the State of New Jersey’s hotline at 1 (800) 222-1222. The hotline is home of the New Jersey Poison Information and Education System, and is staffed 24 hours a day by state health workers.
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