The health and well-being of all East Orange residents is at the forefront of our efforts as we continue to closely monitor and prepare for the possible implications of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). As of today, March 12, 2020, there are no positive reports of COVID-19 in the City of East Orange or Essex County.
The East Orange Department of Health and Human Services, under the direction of Dr. Monique S. Griffith, along with the East Orange Board of Health, is in frequent communication with the NJ Department of Health (NJDOH). We have adopted and implemented recommendations given by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to ensure that we remain healthy, well-informed and are protecting those who are very vulnerable to this virus.
Below are the following precautionary measures currently being taken throughout the city:
- All non-essential community events and group activities will be postponed until the public health state of emergency declaration has been rescinded and personnel have been advised to resume by city officials; therefore, transportation to and from non-essential group activities will be postponed until further notice.
- All events and programs of the East Orange Public Library are suspended March 12-31.
- Passport Services at the City Clerk’s Office at East Orange City Hall are suspended until further notice.
- A deep cleaning of all municipal buildings including hourly rounds of disinfecting highly touched surfaces such as doorknobs and counters.
- Equipping all offices, bathroom and entrances with sanitizers and disinfectant wipes.
The city will work to reschedule any events and activities that have been already planned, and if rescheduling is not possible, we will facilitate refunds. Note that no additional funds for trips will be collected until further notice.
We encourage residents to utilize our online services to conduct city business such as paying tax and water bills at www.eastorange-nj.gov.
To protect our vulnerable senior population, which has been determined to be more susceptible to this virus, the City of East Orange is issuing the following precautionary measures:
- All senior activities including daily programming and trips offered at the East Orange Senior Center have been indefinitely suspended.
- The Division of Senior Services (DOSS) will continue to provide transportation to seniors for “essential purposes” ONLY, i.e. routine treatments such as dialysis, or other routine lifesaving/sustaining procedures.
- Additional DOSS transportation within city limits will be restricted to medical appointments, visits to the pharmacy or grocery shopping. All other travel will be postponed until further notice.
- Senior residents are encouraged to obtain a 14-day supply of groceries, when possible, and to make arrangements with your medical providers for a 14-day supply of medication, as deemed medically necessary.
City officials remain in close communication with the East Orange School District and the East Orange Board of Education to monitor this unprecedented public health crisis.
- All East Orange Public Schools will be closed on Monday, March 16 for STUDENTS ONLY. Teachers will report to work and be trained on virtual learning while maintenance and custodial staff conduct a deep cleaning of all school facilities. Students should anticipate reporting to school Tuesday, March 17 unless notified otherwise.
- Effective Monday, March 16, 2020, the East Orange School District will suspend all afterschool programs (i.e. YMCA, Recreation, etc.) and athletic events.
WHAT WE KNOW
The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory infection called by a new virus that originated in Wuhan, China in December 2019. It is thought that the virus is mainly spread from person-to-person. Symptoms such as fever, cough, sore throat and shortness of breath may appear within 2-14 days of exposure to the virus.
Because this virus is new, we are still learning more about its transmission patterns. However, it is highly recommended that you take the following precautionary measures to protect yourself and those around you:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
- Practice good hygiene by covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your sleeve. Dispose of tissue properly, DO NOT REUSE.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Stay home and call your doctor immediately if you are sick and avoid contact with those who are sick.
- Avoid unprotected contact with wild or farm animals.
Consumers who suspect price gouging (excessive price increases during a declared state of emergency) or any other violation of consumer protection laws, particularly as a result of COVID-19, are urged to call the East Orange Health Department at 973.266.5480.
For more information and updates, please visit the following sites: