Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr., Freeholder President Brendan Gill and Vice President Wayne Richardson announced that testing for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) will continue in Essex County Weequahic Park throughout the month of May. The additional dates for May are as follows: Mondays, May 11 & 18 (no testing on Memorial Day, May 25); Wednesdays, May 13, 20 & 27; and Fridays, May 15, 22 & 29. Screenings are for Essex County residents and are by appointment only. Residents can exhibit symptoms or be asymptomatic. They will be scheduled from 9 a.m. to 12 noon; 600 tests will be available each day. Residents must arrive by car.
“Offering all of our residents with the opportunity to be tested whether they display symptoms of the Coronavirus or not will provide us with a better picture of how many people have been infected with this disease. Essex County residents who want to get tested can visit www.EssexCOVID.org or call 973-324-9950,” DiVincenzo said. “Our residents are urged to do their own park to stop the spread of the virus by practicing social distancing, wearing face coverings, washing their hands and staying indoors. We must continue to be vigilant. It is too early to declare victory over this pandemic,” he added.
“Implementing COVID-19 testing for symptomatic and asymptomatic residents is a significant step in fighting the spread of the pandemic locally and across the state. As we know, it is very possible for COVID-19 to be spread by carriers who have no symptoms. I am proud of the Administration and our healthcare consultants for enhancing our testing in this way and giving asymptomatic Essex County residents the ability to be tested,” Freeholder President Brendan Gill said.
“Essex County has been hit extremely hard by the Coronavirus pandemic. Testing both asymptomatic and symptomatic residents will be crucial in slowing the spread of COVID-19. I thank the County Administration and our healthcare professionals for their hard work and diligence providing this testing for all residents of Essex County,” Freeholder Vice President Wayne Richardson said.
The screenings are being offered to all Essex County residents who wish to get tested. Residents can be exhibiting symptoms or be asymptomatic. Testing is by appointment only. To make an appointment, residents can visit www.EssexCOVID.org or call the Essex County Office of Emergency Management at 973-324-9950. (The call-in center will be open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.) Appointments will be scheduled from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Anyone making an appointment will receive a confirmation number; residents must bring the confirmation number with them to their appointment.
Tests are being offered free of charge to Essex County residents. Having health insurance is not a requirement. Follow up contact will be made to assess the continuing health of the person who completed the screening.
Medical personnel from RWJBarnabas Health System, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, University Hospital, Hackensack Hospital, Essex County Hospital and nurses from public schools in Essex County are staffing the testing sites and call-in center. Security at the site is being provided by the Essex County Sheriff’s Office and Newark Police Department.
“We thank the nurses, law enforcement officers and first responders who have stepped up to the front lines by working at our testing site. We appreciate their professionalism and for making our site run smoothly and efficiently,” DiVincenzo, Gill and Richardson said.
Essex County will continue to administer the virus screening as long as supplies of test kits, gowns, facial masks and gloves last.
Residents can help stop the spread of Novel Coronavirus by washing their hands frequently, using hand sanitizer after touching hard surfaces, staying home if they feel sick, practicing social distancing and avoiding spending any time in crowds of people. Residents are also reminded to adhere to restrictions enacted by Governor Phil Murphy, which include a curfew between the hours of 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. and restrict their traveling unless it is absolutely necessary.