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March 9, 2020 9:00 AM

COVID-19 INFORMATION FOR EO RESIDENTS!


**TESTING INFORMATION** All East Orange residents – symptomatic or asymptomatic – can be tested for COVID-19 at 161 Elmwood Avenue (the Old V.L.D. School Complex on August 7 and 21 between 9am-1pm for walk up testing, Appointments may be made by visiting https://17709.portal.athenahealth.com/.

In partnership with Platinum Health Services, Wellness Suite 360, Not Just A Black Body (NJABB), and Accu Reference Medical Lab, East Orange will be offering COVID-19 testing to all East Orange residents who want to be tested, regardless of insurance, ability to pay or whether they have symptoms or not. There is no up-front cost for testing.

ABOUT THE (NOVEL) CORONAVIRUS
COVID-19 is a new respiratory disease, caused by a novel (or new) coronavirus that has not previously been seen in humans. Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Here are some key websites with critical information for New Jersey residents:
www.covid19.nj.gov
www.booker.senate.gov/coronavirus
www.cdc.gov

To check daily case updates in East Orange, please visit www.essexcountynj.org

Please follow the City of East Orange's Facebook page@EOCityHall for information on resources, case updates, town hall meetings, relief programs and more.

FREE FOOD DISTRIBUTION
The City of East Orange is operating Grab N' Go Food Distribution Sites at the East Orange Senior Center and the Fellowship Civic Center. To find out more information, please call the Division of Senior Services at 973.266.8832 or the Department of Recreation and Cultural Affairs at 973.414.4141.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Symptoms of this infection may appear 2-14 days after exposure and include:
• Fever
• Cough and shortness of breath, and
• In severe cases, pneumonia (fluid in the lungs).

However, it’s possible for people with COVID-19 to spread the virus to others up to 48 hours before they have symptoms. Call your healthcare professional if you develop symptoms, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19.

You can also call 2-1-1 to learn more about:
• COVID-19 prevention, symptoms, and treatment
• Information about testing
• Guidance for people planning or returning from travel

ABOUT CORONAVIRUSES
Coronaviruses are a large group of viruses; some cause illness in people and some occur in animals, including camels, civet cats and bats. Rarely, animal coronaviruses can evolve and infect people and then may spread between people. Human coronaviruses cause routine seasonal respiratory virus infections. Other coronaviruses, like SARS and MERS, can cause serious illnesses.

HOW DO CORONAVIRUSES SPREAD?
Coronaviruses are respiratory viruses and are generally spread through respiratory secretions (droplets from coughs and sneezes) of an infected person to another person.

KNOW HOW IT SPREADS
• There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
• The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
• The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

EVERYONE SHOULD:
• Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
• If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Avoid close contact with people who are sick
• Stay home as much as possible.
• Put distance between yourself and other people.
• You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick.
• Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities..
• You do not have to use a face mask meant for a healthcare worker.
• Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others. The cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.
• If you are in a private setting and do not have on your cloth face covering, remember to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
• Throw used tissues in the trash.
• Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
• Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
• If surfaces are dirty, clean them. Use detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.
• Then, use a household disinfectant. Most common EPA-registered household disinfectants will work.

SENIORS AND PEOPLE WITH CRITICAL MEDICAL CONDITIONS
• If possible, do not leave your home.
• Avoid close contact with others.

CITY SERVICES
Effective March 17, 2020, Mayor Ted R. Green closed East Orange City Hall, all municipal buildings and parks to the public. All programs and special events were indefinitely suspended. Municipal services are still operating, but with limited staff and provisions for making payments and other necessary paperwork. Please visit www.eastorange-nj.gov or call the Mayor's Office of Constituent Services at 973.266.5151 to learn how you can handle your business remotely.

WHAT ARE ESSENTIAL NEEDS?
On March 21, Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order No. 107 which mandates that everyone stay at home unless conducting an essential need, which include purposes such as working as an essential employee, grocery shopping, going to medical appointments and exercising outdoors. Personal recreation is allowed if you are not in a group.

WEAR A FACE COVERING
Data suggests that many who are infected with COVID-19 are not symptomatic. For that reason, the East Orange Department of Health and Human Services STRONGLY RECOMMENDS that all members of the public wear cloth face coverings when doing essential activities, like grocery shopping or going to an essential job. It is especially important for essential workers, like grocery or pharmacy clerks, to wear face coverings as they are coming into contact with many people throughout the day. It is not required to wear a face covering while doing personal recreation outdoors, however, you must maintain a distance of at least six feet from other people and avoid gathering in groups.

Covers do not need to be surgical masks or N95 masks, which are in short supply and should be reserved for those who need them the most and have the highest risk of infection, like our health care workers and first responders.

Face covers can be made at home using cloth materials, like a T-shirt or bandana, and without having to sew. Please visit YouTube for demonstrations on how to make a cloth mask.

GUIDANCE FOR ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES
• Do not allow employees or patrons to come into close contact (within six feet) of each other in your facility.
• Limit gathering opportunities by marking spaces for people to sit or stand that are farther than six feet away from each other.
• Enact telework or remote work policies whenever possible to limit the number of people in one space.
• Ensure handwashing areas are available to employees and patrons and encourage frequent handwashing.
• Routinely use a disinfectant wipe or spray on high-touch surfaces in workspaces and public areas.

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Latest Update:

May 16, 2020 10:10 AM

Starting on Friday, May 15, all East Orange residents – symptomatic or asymptomatic – can be tested for COVID-19 at a drive-through location at 161 Elmwood Avenue (the Old V.L.D. School Complex).

The East Orange Department of Health and Human Services, in partnership with Platinum Health Services, Central Jersey Urgent Care, and Accu Reference Medical Lab, will be offering COVID-19 testing to all East Orange residents who want to be tested, regardless of insurance, ability to pay or whether they have symptoms or not. Testing is available by appointment only. There is no up-front cost for testing.

Testing will be held between 1pm-4pm on Tuesdays and Fridays for residents ages 18 and up and for essential employees and seniors ages 60 and up on Thursdays. Appointments may be made by visiting https://www.clockwisemd.com/hospitals/5326/visits/new.

A limited number of antibody (serology) tests are available at the drive-through site daily. During their telemedicine appointment, residents should state if the antibody test is wanted.

“We need to test as many residents as possible to understand how widespread COVID-19 is in the City of East Orange, especially among our most vulnerable populations,” said Mayor Ted R. Green. “Expanding testing is not only key to helping us flatten the curve, but it also influences our thinking about a strategic plan to safely reopen our city.”

Dr. Monique S. Griffith, Director of Health and Human Services, along with the East Orange Board of Health and Health Officer Victor Kuteyi, have been at the forefront of raising public health awareness of the COVID-19 Pandemic since early February when reports of positive cases on U.S. soil first emerged. Since then, the Green Administration has been working tirelessly to keep residents informed, enforce state-mandated guidelines, provide resources to those in need and to increase access to testing.

"Increasing access to testing for all of our residents despite their insurance coverage and presentation of symptoms is an important step in our response to the COVID-19 pandemic and will inform our reopening strategy," said Dr. Griffith. "Many residents who had symptoms and those without symptoms have contacted us requesting this type of support and we are pleased that we are able to meet the local need."

To date, East Orange has 1,699 positive cases and 161 confirmed deaths, accounting for a little more than 10% of cases in Essex County, which has 15,905 reported positive cases.

Please follow the four steps below to sign up for an appointment:

Step 1: Schedule a telemedicine appointment and complete intake documents using the following link: https://www.clockwisemd.com/hospitals/5326/visits/new.

Step 2: After your telemedicine appointment, select a date for testing.

Step 3: Arrive on the day of the appointment with your confirmation number, ID, and a face covering.

Step 4: After taking your test, leave the site and await your results.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible for an appointment? All East Orange residents including seniors (60y and older) and essential personnel working within the City of East Orange whether or not they are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.

How do I obtain a referral or prescription for COVID-19 on-site testing? This is not needed, as one will be generated after your scheduled telemedicine appointment.

What do I need to do to prepare for my COVID-19 test? On the day of your appointment, bring a) yourself, b) a valid photo ID, c) proof of residence or status as an essential personnel and d) proof of insurance. For general testing-related inquiries, contact the Department of Health and Human Services (973-266-5480) for assistance.

How is the COVID-19 testing administered? The swab test for COVID-19 used by Accu Reference Lab is a test to determine whether or not you have the SARS-CoV-2 virus. A limited number of antibody (serology) tests are available at the drive-through site daily. If antibody testing is desired, state this during your telemedicine appointment.

Is the COVID-19 test that is available on-site free? For the insured: All screening and collection fees will be billed to your insurance. Deductibles, co-insurance and copays do not apply. For the uninsured: We want to ensure that you are able to access COVID-19 testing, if desired. If you are uninsured, please contact the East Orange Department of Health and Human Services (973-266-5480) for assistance and guidance.

What do I do on the day of testing? On the day you are scheduled to be tested, visit drive-through location. Be sure to wear a face covering and maintain social distance. The number of individuals per vehicle should be limited to two (2).

How will I get my COVID-19 test results? The urgent care facility will contact you directly to notify you of your results in approximately 3-4 business days.

What do I do while I wait for my COVID-19 test results? While you await your results, follow the existing CDC guidelines related to the precautions to be taken while in the community. This includes but is not limited to staying home if you are able, wearing face coverings, maintaining an appropriate distance from others when in public, and washing your hands frequently with soap and water. If you must leave home due to an emergency, please be sure to wear a face covering at all times.