Friday, April 10, 2020

Click here to
sign up for our newsletter!

The Journal Publications will be operating remotely effective Thursday, March 19, 2020.

Feb 04, 2020

Monmouth County Health Department Gives Flu, Coronavirus Update

In December of 2019 a previously unknown coronavirus (2019-nCoV) was first detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. This virus, which has seen limited person-to-person spread outside of China, has now been reported in a growing number of international locations, including the United States. While outbreaks of novel virus infections among people are always of public health concern, it is important to recognize that Public Health agencies around the world from the World Health Organization, The Centers for Disease Control (CDC,) and more locally the New Jersey State Department of Health and the Monmouth County Health Department (MCHD) are closely monitoring this rapidly evolving situation. Many precautions have already been put into place.

At the time of this report, there are no confirmed cases in New Jersey and the risk of 2019-nCoV infection is considered low. Still, a 24-hour public hotline has been set up to answer questions about coronavirus and can be reached at 800-222-1222.

Although 2019-nCoV is significant, closer to home, influenza is of far greater immediate concern. Influenza, commonly known as the seasonal flu, is prevalent in the community and influenza activity in the New Jersey is currently high. For the 2019-20 flu season, CDC estimates that so far there have been at least 19 million flu illness resulting in 180,000 hospitalizations and 10,000 deaths from flu. MCHD reminds our residents that it is never too late to get a flu shot. A flu shot can prevent or lessen the symptoms of influenza. Anyone who has not yet received a flu shot for this season and has questions is asked to contact the Health Department office at 732-431-7456.

Courtesy of the Monmouth County Health Department

Finally, MCHD recommends that the public stay informed. CDC is updating its website daily with the latest information and advice for the public. Remember to take everyday preventive actions that are always recommended to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses including Seasonal Influenza and 2019-nCoV:

• Avoid close contact with sick people.
• While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible.
• Stay home if you are sick.
• Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
• Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 60 percent alcohol.

Anyone who feels sick with fever, cough or difficulty breathing, and who has traveled to China or was in close contact with someone with 2019-nCoV in the 14 days before they began to feel sick, is advised to seek medical care. Before going to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about recent travel and symptoms.