East Orange, NJ, February 14, 2020: Mayor Ted R. Green and the Department of Health and Human Services Director Dr. Monique Griffith are urging residents with questions or concerns about the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) to call the State of New Jersey’s Poison Information and Education System 24-hour hotline at 1-800-222-1222 or the East Orange Health Department at 973-266-5480 8:30am-4:30pm Monday through Friday, or 973-518-3969 after hours.
While the Centers for Diseases Control considers this is a very serious public health threat, based on current information, the immediate health risk from 2019-nCoV to the general American public is considered low at this time. There have been no reported cases of the coronavirus in the City of East Orange, local health officials said.
The 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is a virus identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China in December 2019. Many of the patients in the outbreak in Wuhan, China reportedly had some link to a large seafood and animal market, suggesting animal-to-person spread. However, person-to-person spread is occurring. There is currently no vaccine to prevent 2019-nCoV infection.
Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath and the virus can be transmitted through close contact with an infected person or animal.
Dr. Griffith advises residents to take the following precautionary preventative measures:
- Handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick with cold-like or flu-like symptoms.
- 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.
- No unprotected contact with live wild or farm animals
“Anyone who thinks they may have been exposed to the virus should contact their doctor or local health department immediately,” said Dr. Griffith.
For more information on the virus, please visit www.njpies.org.