Get the latest: COVID-19 Updates | 2020 Primary Election

Posted Wednesday, March 11th, 2020

Fact-Based Guidance Provided to Municipalities

The Morris County Board of Freeholders is closely monitoring the situation regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) and has authorized county funding for needs related to this issue.  Morris County will employ an epidemiologist and a public health nurse, allowing for a more rapid response to local issues that arise in conjunction with coronavirus.

The Morris County Office of Emergency Management and Office of Health Management are coordinating regularly with officials in all 39 Morris County towns, school districts, and major healthcare providers.

Freeholder Smith

Freeholder Director Deborah Smith

“Morris County has proven time and time again that when the challenges are the greatest, it is the bond that we have fostered with our local governing bodies that will make us successful,” said Freeholder Director Deborah Smith.

Officials across the county are working in concert with the state Department of Health and federal agencies to ensure they have the latest information to best deal with the virus. In particular, county officials are working closely with Atlantic Health and Saint Clare’s Health.

Connections have also been made with the large network of nonprofits that serve Morris County.  It is vital that these providers are able to continue to provide the diverse and often essential support to the community.

Morris County Government Collaborates with Municipalities on Coronavirus Response

Freeholder Tom Mastrangelo

“County residents should be assured that we are taking all necessary steps to be prepared to deal with this virus,’’ said Freeholder Tom Mastrangelo. “Significant coordination has occurred and will continue to occur so that resources may be shared in the most effective way.’’

  • Morris County is working with health and medical professionals to take extra precautions at county government facilities, including the Correctional Facility, Juvenile Detention Center, Youth Shelter, and 9-1-1 Communications Center;
  • The Morris County Sheriff’s Office is working in partnership with the Morris County OEM to support all operational activities.
  • The Morris County Communications (9-1-1) Center has implemented call screening tools for emergency medical calls to identify potential COVID-19 cases at the time of dispatch, so first responders can be aware of relevant information and take appropriate precautions;
  • Morris County OEM’s Mobile Ambulance Bus will have added equipment on board capable of assessing large numbers of patients in connection with COVID-19, if needed.
  • County OEM is encouraging EMS responders, physicians, and healthcare facilities operators to make early notifications to hospitals, allowing hospitals to be prepared for patient admission prior to arrival.
Morris County Government Collaborates with Municipalities on Coronavirus Response

Morris County Office of Health Management head Carlos Perez addressed the freeholder work session on March 11.

The following are tips provided by the Morris County Office of Health Management (consistent with CDC recommendations) to protect yourself and others from respiratory infections, including the coronavirus (COVID-19):

  • Stay home if you are sick;
  • Limit close contact with people who are sick;
  • Put distance between yourself and other people. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth;
  • Avoid handshakes. Try an elbow bump;
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds;
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol;
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, such as door handles and cellphones;
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. If you do not have a tissue, use your sleeve (not your hands);
  • Get a flu shot to prevent the flu if you have not done so this season.

Residents are asked to avoid rumors and some less-than-accurate reports about this virus. Keep informed by obtaining information from trusted and reliable sources, including the CDC, NJDOH, and their local health departments:

CDC’s COVID-19 website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/index.html

N.J. Department of Health COVID-19 website: https://www.nj.gov/health/cd/topics/ncov.shtml

NJ COVID-19 Information Public Call Center: 1-800-222-1222.

For your local health department, see the Morris County Office of Health Management website: https://health.morriscountynj.gov/public/healthdepts/.