COVID-19 Updates

To keep the public informed, the Cape May County Board of Chosen Freeholders are providing regular updates in government services and pertinent links regarding COVID-19. Coronavirus is a serious illness that spreads from person to person. Cape May County officials are working closely with the State and Federal Government to provide the latest information to help mitigate the spread of this virus.

Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton and Freeholder Jeffrey L. Pierson, who oversees the Cape May County Department of Health want to assure everyone that the County is closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19 in Cape May County and throughout the region. Their foremost goal is to protect the well-being of our employees and families as well as our residents and visitors and continue to provide essential services to our County.

County government will continue to operate, and all government functions will be offered with some adjustments including limited hours of operation and reduced services. Communications remain open and the public is encouraged to call or email for needed services or information.

We are all working together to keep you informed and safe.

Gerald M. Thornton, Freeholder Director
Jeffrey L. Pierson, Freeholder, liaison, Health and Human Services.

Governor Philip D. Murphy 

Executive Orders Regarding COVID-19

Administrative Orders Regarding COVID-19

The Board of Chosen Freeholders have passed resolutions regarding COVID-19, click here to view the resolutions.

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 172,356 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,251 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 763 including 69 deaths. Additionally, there are 23 out of county positive cases that are not reflected in the spreadsheet below. Sadly, an 81-year-old male from Cape May City has passed from this disease. “My deepest condolences,” said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton. “Wishing the family peace and comfort during this hard time. “

7.2.20 graph 1

7.2.20 graph 2

Cape Regional Medical Center is reporting that most of the recent out of county positive COVID-19 cases have involved young people between the ages of 16 and 22. Over the past two days the Health Department has confirmed 8 positive cases yesterday and another 23 today within this same age group. Not one of these cases was in need of hospitalization.  

Although widespread testing is being done throughout New Jersey, these new cases are coming from people failing to social distance. The majority of new cases testing positive in Cape May County within the last few days were young adults who were socializing without regard to the threats of spreading coronavirus. Most of these people are short-term visitors with permanent residence from another county or state.

As a result, the Cape May County Health Department is launching a social media educational safety campaign targeting this age group with social distancing and masks wearing precautions.

Kevin Thomas, Cape May County Health Officer stated, “Although Cape May County’s year-round population COVID-19 cases are the lowest in the State, it is important to remember that while you may be on vacation, this disease is not. Without protection, crowded settings and social gatherings such as large house parties are prime conditions for contracting the disease.”

Freeholder Jeff Pierson said, “The key elements to reducing the spread of the coronavirus involve social distancing, proper hand hygiene and wearing face masks when you can’t social distance. Yet there are still irresponsible people who refuse to wear masks to help slow the spread of COVID-19.”

Recent studies indicate that without a mask, social distancing or any other preventive measures, the risk of transmitting the coronavirus is 17.4%. Add a mask or respirator, and that number drops to 3.1%. With less than 3.28 feet (1 meter) of distance and no other protective measures, research found the risk of transmission was 12.8%. With more than 3.28 feet of distance, it’s 2.6%.

The Cape May County Freeholder Board, the Mayors of Cape May County, and the Board of Directors from the Cape May County Chamber of Commerce came out on Wednesday to urge everyone to wear a mask in public spaces to both keep people safe and the economy open.

“As the governor has said, there will be peaks and valleys as we move through this, but this demonstrates that our bar owners and younger people need to immediately take this situation much more seriously or risk new restrictions and shutdowns,” said Thornton.

The New Jersey State Health Department requires the local health departments to document positive cases to their permanent address. Therefore, out of county or out of state visitors who test positive are not counted in the overall numbers for Cape May County. As such, the Cape May County report will list out of county positives separately and will not be reflected in the New Jersey State numbers.

Additionally, Chief Paul S. Skill, President of the Cape May County Chiefs of Police Association, states, ”All restaurant, bar and business owners and our residents and visitors to do their part in making sure everyone complies with the COVID-19 restrictions.  Please follow all social distancing protocols and wear masks whenever possible so all that you bring home from your holiday celebration are fond memories.  The Chiefs of Police Association wishes all of you a safe, healthy and fun Fourth of July.” 

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

Cape May County Zoo Takes Additional Safety Precautions

The Cape May County Zoo is taking additional steps to provide safety precautions for its visitors, staff, and animals. Capacity is going to be placed at 20% and all visitors over the age of 2-years-old are required to wear a mask, to follow the Centers for Disease Control guidelines. These changes will go into effect beginning on Friday, July 3.

The new protocols will allow visitors who are in the Zoo a safer experience, while further promoting social distancing. The Cape May County Health Department has partnered with the Cape May County Zoo and had the Social Distancing Ambassadors make appearances at the Zoo to promote proper safety protocols and they will continue to make appearances there throughout the summer.

“As we have learned during this time period you can never be too careful,” said Freeholder E. Marie Hayes, liaison to the Cape May County Zoo. “As Cape May County reopens ‘Safely Together,’ we need to constantly look at our protocols and procedures and make changes that are deemed necessary.”

This decision follows a request from the Cape May County Freeholder Board, all Cape May County Mayors, and the Cape May County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors to request mask usage in public places. This request was made to both keep residents and visitors safe, and to ensure the economy can stay open.

“New Jersey’s overall case numbers have been on a downward trend,” said Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton. “We want to keep it that way and I applaud the Zoo staff for the hard work they have put in to ensure that our visitors remain safe, while visiting one of the best attractions in the United States.”

A one-way directional flow had already been set up throughout the Zoo to reduce the amount of interactions between guests where possible. Also, the Aviary and Reptile House continue to remain closed at this time.

COVID-19 Update 7/1/20

New Jersey has 171,928 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,224 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 761 including 68 deaths. In addition, out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 8.

7.1.20 graphs

As testing of individuals for COVID-19 continues, so does the need for contact tracers to conduct interviews with individuals who may have come into contact with those who tested positive.

The State Health Department, in partnership with Rutgers University, led by their School of Public Health and including the School of Health Professions, School of Nursing, School of Social Work, and Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology, have launched the Community Contact Tracing Corps. The goal of the Community Contact Tracing Corps is to support Local Health Departments in meeting operational demands by providing additional contact tracing capacity on an as-needed basis.

In addition, in partnership with Dimagi Software Company, Rutgers University will deploy their open source CommCare platform across New Jersey to centralize the State’s contact tracing efforts. Collecting information in a uniform way makes it easier for health officials to share information and to track the virus across New Jersey.

Currently, the Cape May County Health Department is being trained in the CommCare contact tracing platform and will be supported by additional tracers from the Community Contact Tracing Corps. If you are Covid-19 positive you will be asked to share your close contacts. That information is used ONLY for the purpose of helping those people to get tested or to quarantine. Your information is confidential. Your name will not be released to your contacts or your COVID-19 status – that information will only be known to public health officials and our local health department partners, if needed.

Together, we can stop the spread of COVID-19 and safely restart our economy.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

County Freeholders, Mayors, and Chamber Issue Urgent Request for Universal Mask-Wearing

CAPE MAY COUNTY, NJ – The Cape May County Board of Chosen Freeholders, the Cape May County Chamber Board of Directors, and the Mayors of all sixteen Cape May County municipalities released this joint statement today as follows:

We join together to urgently request that all residents of and visitors to Cape May County wear face coverings in all public places, other than certain very limited exceptions. Thanks to the good sense, hard work, and sacrifices of members of our community, COVID-19 cases in Cape May County have remained below a critical threshold, however, we must take bold steps to ensure that cases continue to trend downward or, at minimum, remain steady even with the influx of seasonal residents and visitors expected during July and August. For the health of all and as an investment in the economic health of our community, we deeply appreciate and now depend upon the cooperation of business owners, staff members, and the public in this needed next step.

States and regions ahead of New Jersey in the business reopening process are experiencing surges of the coronavirus that are, in certain instances, exceeding the capacity of medical infrastructure. This has caused both pauses in business openings and the reclosing of businesses.  As a result, community leaders are focusing attention on and stepping up efforts to promote protocols such as mask-wearing in order to avoid similar outcomes.

“Cape May County is a safe place to live, work, and visit, and we must step up aggressively to meet the COVID threat in order to keep it that way,” stated Will Morey, Cape May County Freeholder and Co-Chair of the County’s Recovery Task Force. “We’re in a position right now to contain the mild outbreak of COVID that our County is experiencing. Engaging this clear and present threat will serve to protect public health and, for businesses, may literally save the summer,” Morey added.

An established and growing body of scientific studies support mask-wearing as an effective mitigation in the spread of COVID-19, and a consensus had rapidly developed on this matter in the wider medical community. States that have instituted a mask mandate have demonstrably slowed their COVID growth rate.

For specifics on face coverings that are in compliance with this request, please see the relevant CDC guidance.

The following are exceptions, where the mask-wearing request does not apply:

  • For those engaged in active outdoor recreation such as swimming, walking, hiking, bicycling, or running.
  • While on the beach, so long as strict social distancing is maintained.
  • When socially distanced and eating or drinking in public at a restaurant, bar, or other food or beverage establishment.
  • By those who cannot medically tolerate wearing a face covering.
  • By children aged 9 or younger.

Please note that the request for the wearing of face coverings INCLUDES the County’s Boardwalks.

“Wherever you are, we welcome you to come here and enjoy your summer in a responsible way,” said Freeholder Len Desiderio, who is the Mayor of Sea Isle City and Co-Chair of the County’s Recovery Task Force. “We’ve had good participation with directives so far, and this urgent mask-wearing request is an important way for us to be proactive and make sure our visitors will not make COVID a summer memory,” he added.

While united in issuing this urgent request for the wearing of face coverings, the group also recognizes the absolute necessity of observing adherence to capacity limitations imposed by State Executive Order, particularly for bars and restaurants.  All efforts will be made to encourage and compel owners, staff, and the public to operate and congregate within those limits.

“Businesses are really the front line of actively encouraging folks to follow protocols, wear masks and social distance,” commented Vicki Clark, President of the Cape May County Chamber. “This urgent request will help businesses protect their employees and customers, as well as their own economic vitality throughout the summer season,” added Clark.

The County will continue to monitor health data and observations of activity in the area and update the public on mitigation measures as needed. To assist with positively and proactively requesting mask use, free graphics and marketing materials are available for public download at www.safelytogethercmc.com.

COVID-19 Update 6/30/20

New Jersey has 171,667 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,181 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 755 including 68 deaths. With great sadness, we are announcing the passing of a 94-year-old female from Dennis Township, and an 88-year-old male along with a 78-year-old male both from Lower Township. “With sincere condolences to the families and friends,” said Cape May County Freeholder Jeff Pierson. “Wishing you peace and strength at this sad time.” In addition, out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 3.

6.30.20 graphs

The reopening of Texas will pause due to a rising spike of infection rates of COVID-19. Experts have watched with growing alarm as the number of confirmed cases in Texas rise past 125,000. The state is dealing with an estimated 50,000 active cases, one of the highest numbers in the nation.

Texas has added more than 5,000 new cases on each of the last two days, and the number of overall cases has doubled since the end of May. Hospitals are rapidly filling with new COVID-19 patients.

Additionally, the past three weeks have set consecutive records for the number of new coronavirus infections in Florida. A number of cases tied to bars and restaurants has led to questions about whether the state’s reopening is partially responsible for the increase. After the state recorded 25,000 infections in five days, Florida announced it had suspended the consumption of alcohol at bars.

While Florida and Texas both relaxed restrictions early, more cautious states like California have not escaped the trend. People under the age of 35 now make up more than 44 percent of new cases. 

COVID-19 clusters of young people have been noted in several other states, including Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Washington and Wisconsin.

With an eye on these states, Governor Murphy announced the rescinding of the start date for indoor dinning. He stated, “Given the current situation in numerous other states we do not believe it is prudent at this time to push forward with what is, in effect, a sedentary indoor activity – especially when we know that this virus moves differently indoors than out, making it even more deadly.”

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update 6/29/20

New Jersey has 171,272 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,138 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 750 including 65 deaths. In addition, out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 4.  Sadly, today we are announcing the passing of a 64-year-old male and a 66-year-old male both from Middle Township.

“Please accept my deepest condolences for your family’s loss, “said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton. 


To save lives and prevent the spread of COVID-19, the State has issued an incoming travel advisory that all individuals entering New Jersey from states with a significant spread of COVID-19 quarantine for 14-days after leaving that state.

Under the 14-day quarantine travel advisory announced by the Governors of New Jersey, New York and Connecticut, individuals traveling to or returning to New Jersey from states with increasing rates of COVID-19 are advised to self-quarantine for 14 days. This includes travel by train, bus, car, plane and any other method of transportation.

The 14-day quarantine travel advisory applies to travel from certain states identified as those that have a positive COVID-19 test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents or have a 10% or higher positivity rate over a seven-day rolling average ("impacted states.")

As of Friday, June 26, there are currently eight states that meet the criteria stated above:

  • Alabama

  • Arkansas

  • Arizona

  • Florida

  • North Carolina

  • South Carolina

  • Texas

  • Utah

This list will be updated regularly.

Travelers and those residents who are returning from impacted states should self-quarantine at their home, or a hotel or other temporary lodging. Individuals should leave the place of self-quarantine only to seek medical care/treatment or to obtain food and other essential items.

The self-quarantine is voluntary, but compliance is expected. Travelers and residents returning from impacted states typically will not need to check-in with public health officials, unless otherwise they are involved in contract tracing efforts or required to do so by their employer or any other federal, state or local law or order. It is expected that individuals will follow the recommendation to self-quarantine.

The travel advisory does not apply to any individual passing through designated states for a limited duration through the course of travel. Examples of such brief passage include but are not limited to: stopping at rest stops for vehicles, buses, and/or trains; or layovers for air travel, bus travel, or train travel.

Travelers arriving from areas with increasing COVID-19 cases may wish to postpone their travel to the region if they are unwilling or unable to follow the self-quarantine advisory. Contact your travel agent or real estate agent to inquire about any potential cancelation and/or refund. Alternatively, you may travel to NJ and stay in self-quarantine in the home; however, you are advised not to leave the home for any activities other than to seek medical care/treatment or to obtain food or other essential items. NJ hotels and home rental services (i.e., Air B & B, VRBO, HomeAway, etc.) should contact guests with reservations to inform them of the self-quarantine advisory.

Exemptions

Individuals who are traveling to New Jersey from impacted states for business are exempted from the application of the travel advisory. This, for example, would include truckers driving from an impacted state to New Jersey, and any state, local and federal officials and employees traveling in their official capacities on government business. Individuals traveling for business should still consider postponing travel to the extent possible. Individuals are encouraged to self-monitor for symptoms upon return from any travel to an impacted state, and employers should consider screening employees for symptoms before permitting them to return to work. Employees and employers should follow current CDC guidance regarding travel, available here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-in-the-us.html

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook. 

COVID-19 Update 6/28/20

New Jersey has 171,182 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,121 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 748 including 63 deaths.

6.27.20 graph 16.28.20 graph 2


DRIVER’S LICENSES

All driver licenses, non-driver IDs, vehicle registrations, inspection stickers, and temporary tags expiring before May 31 have been extended to July 31. Documents expiring in June or July are extended by two months.

In addition, the federal REAL ID requirement has been extended for another year, until October 2021.

Most renewals of driver licenses, non-driver IDs, and registrations -- including some commercial registrations -- can be processed online at NJMVC.gov. Customers can change their address, pay fees, and access other services online as well.

NEW SAFETY PROTOCOLS FOR MVC OPERATIONS

Going forward, everyone who enters the MVC agency will be required to wear a face covering. That includes customers as well as employees. If a customer cannot wear a face covering, MVC will make other arrangements for their transaction.

In order to limit crowds and speed services during the phased reopening, some agencies have been designated as Licensing Centers and some as Vehicle Centers. Lists of Licensing Centers and Vehicle Centers, as well as information on transactions, will be posted soon at NJMVC.gov.

Drop-off and pick-up transactions will be processed starting June 15, but only the following:

  • At designated Licensing Centers, MVC will be processing and validating permits from driving schools and high schools on a drop-off basis.
  • At designated Vehicle Centers, MVC will be processing registration and title work from dealers. License plates can also be surrendered by drop-off at these agencies in a designated area.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update 6/27/20

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 170,873 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,094 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 745 including 63 deaths. In addition, recent out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 2.

6.27.20 graph 1

6.27.20 graph 2

Summer Programs

Beginning July 6, youth day camps, including municipal summer programs, will be able to operate so long as they comply with required social distancing and other mitigation policies. Residential and overnight camps are prohibited from operating.

To help protect the health and safety of our children, camp workers, and communities against the spread of COVID-19, the Department of Health has released the following guidelines for youth summer camps:

  • Campers and staff must be screened for fever or signs of COVID-19 illness prior to being permitted to enter the facility or participating in camp programming. Persons that have a fever or other signs of illness should not be admitted to the camp.
  • Campers and staff members should be educated on steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • Groups should include the same children each day with the same staff person, if possible. Mixing between groups should be restricted. Camps should avoid communal dining and stagger mealtimes to ensure social distancing of groups. Surfaces should be cleaned and sanitized between each meal service.
  • Staff are encouraged to wear cloth masks while working unless (1) doing so would inhibit the individual’s health, (2) the individual is in extreme heat outdoors, or (3) the individual is in water.
  • Cloth face coverings for staff and campers should be worn when social distancing of 6 feet between assigned groups cannot be maintained. Cloth face coverings should NOT be put on children under age two because of the danger of suffocation.
  • All youth camps are prohibited from off-site activities, engaging in full-contact sports and providing resident or overnight camp activities.
  • Hand wash and hand sanitizers stations should be provided in numerous areas around the camp.
  • Common surfaces and rooms should be cleaned at least daily including restrooms and countertops.
  • Gloves should be worn when handling or serving food to campers.
  • Social distancing is encouraged during bussing/transportation to and from camp. Vehicles should be cleaned and disinfected between each use. Face coverings should be worn when social distancing can’t be maintained.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Faceb

COVID-19 Update 6/26/20

New Jersey has 170,584 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,060 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 741 including 63 deaths. In addition, recent out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 4.


6.18.20 graph 1

6.26.20 graph 2


Summer Programs

Beginning July 6, school districts may hold in-person summer educational programs including extended school year and special education services so long as they follow the health and safety protocols outlined by the NJ Department of Health for Youth summer camps. For more details on these requirements.

School districts may decide the best way to meet their students’ educational needs in a safe environment – whether it be in-person, remote, or hybrid.

In addition, the Department of Education has released guidance that will allow districts to provide robust programs in a safe environment, while preparing students for the school year ahead.

To learn more, refer to the Department of Education’s Summer Learning Resource Guide and Guidance on the Delivery of Extended School Year Services.

The Department of Education has also provided resources to help parents, students, educators, and administrators stay prepared, healthy, and safe: https://www.nj.gov/education/covid19/

Graduation Ceremonies

School districts and colleges/universities will be allowed to hold modified in-person graduation ceremonies beginning on July 6. Until then, only virtual ceremonies are permitted.

Beginning July 6, 2020, drive-through/drive-in and modified in-person, outdoor ceremonies will be permitted subject to requirements for K-12 commencement ceremonies and college/university commencement ceremonies.

Outdoor ceremonies must comply with the limits on outdoor gatherings. A 500-person limit is anticipated by the time graduations can resume.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update - 6/25/20

New Jersey has 170,196 total COVID-19 positive cases and 13,018 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 737 including 63 deaths. In addition, recent out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 3.

We are sadly announcing the passing of a 59-year-old male from Middle Township. “Words cannot even begin to express my sorrow,” said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton. “Please accept my heartfelt condolences on the loss of your loved one.”

6.25.20 COVID Graphs

Indoor gatherings must be limited to 100 people or 25% of a building’s capacity -- whichever number is lower. All attendees at indoor gatherings must wear face coverings and stay six feet apart.

Outdoor gatherings must be limited to 250 people and social distancing must be practiced. There are no limits for First Amendment-protected outdoor activities, such as political protests of any persuasion or outdoor religious services.

Additional requirements for outdoor gatherings include the following:

  • The gathering must take place entirely outdoors except for restroom use;
  • Require attendees to be six feet apart at all times, excluding immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners;
  • Prohibit contact between attendees, and no organized or contact sports;
  • If the event is an organized gathering, the organizer should demarcate six feet of spacing in the area of the gathering to demonstrate appropriate spacing for social distancing;
  • Limit provided seating to single individuals, spaced six feet apart, and sanitized after each use;
  • Prohibit sharing of any physical items provided and require sanitization before and after each use; and
  • Require contactless pay options wherever feasible.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update June 24, 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 169,892 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,995 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 731 including 62 deaths. In addition, recent out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheets are 2.


6.24.20 Graph 1     

6.24.20 Graph 2


Casinos in Atlantic City can reopen on Thursday, July 2 and may operate at 25 percent of their capacity.

Several casinos plan to limit initial openings on July 2 to friends, family, and loyal customers to test new protocols.

Health and safety protocols will be posted here shortly. Guidance is likely to include:

  • Mandatory face coverings and masks
  • Health screenings for all visitors and staff
  • Density limits to ensure social distancing
  • Testing protocols for casino workers if they ask for a test or begin to show symptoms

Outdoor playgrounds, outdoor amusement parks, and outdoor water parks can reopen on July 2, subject to required protocols detailed in forthcoming guidance. Reopening details for arcades will be announced in the coming days as well.

Open outdoor recreational and entertainment businesses must adopt social distancing guidelines and the safety policies described in section 4 on page 6 of Executive Order No. 153, that include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • The public is permitted only in such outdoor spaces, except that members of the public may enter the indoor premises of the recreation business when entering or exiting the establishment in order to access the outdoor area, or to use the restroom
  • Limit total capacity to a number that ensures that all individuals can remain six feet apart
  • Open-air rain tarps, tents, and other outdoor structures shall be allowed solely for the purpose of protecting against foul weather or for shade
  • Require that reservations, cancellations and pre-payments be made via electronic or telephone reservation systems to limit physical interactions. Such policies shall, wherever possible, consider populations that do not have access to internet service or credit cards
  • Install a physical barrier, such as a shield guard, between visitors and employees wherever feasible or otherwise ensure six feet of distance between those individuals, except at the moment of payment
  • Demarcate and post signs that denote six feet of spacing in all commonly used and other applicable areas or where people may form a line
  • Require infection control practices, such as regular hand washing, coughing and sneezing etiquette, and proper tissue usage and disposal
  • Require frequent sanitization of high-touch areas
  • Provide sanitization materials, such as hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes, to staff and customers
  • Immediately separate and send home workers who appear to have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 illness upon arrival at work or who become sick during the day; o. Promptly notify workers of any known exposure to COVID-19 at the worksite, consistent with the confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act and any other applicable laws


Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update - June 23, 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 169,734 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,949 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 723 including 62 deaths. Sadly, we are announcing the passing of a 95-year-old female from Dennis Township.  “My thoughts are with the family and friends during this difficult time of loss,” said Cape May County Freeholder Jeff Pierson.

6.23.20 COVID Graphs

Beginning July 2nd, indoor dining at restaurants may resume so long as required safety protocols are followed including limiting indoor dining to 25% of capacity. Additional guidance will be posted below in the coming days.

Restaurant operating hours for outdoor dining or take-out orders are not limited by any State order.

For outdoor dining, food and beverage establishments must adopt the following protocols and policies:

  • Ensure all areas designated for food and/or beverage consumption conform to applicable local, State, and Federal regulations;
  • Limit capacity to a number that ensure patrons can remain six feet apart from all other patrons, except for those with whom they are sharing a table;
  • Ensure that tables seating individual groups are six feet apart in all directions and that individual seats in any shared area that is not reserved for individual groups, such as an outdoor bar area, are also six feet apart in all directions
  • Prohibit patrons from entering the indoor premises of the food or beverage establishment, except to walk through such premises when entering or exiting the food or beverage establishment in order to access the outdoor area, or to use the restroom;
  • Individuals are allowed to tour restaurant facilities for event-planning purposes, but must wear face coverings at all times and the facility may not provide food or drink tastings or samplings;
  • Require patrons to wear a face covering while inside the indoor premises of the food or beverage establishment, unless the patron has a medical reason for not doing so or is a child under two years of age;
  • Prohibit smoking in any outdoor areas designated for the consumption of food and/or beverages; and
  • Satisfy all standards issued by the Department of Health.
  • For more details, refer to Executive Order No. 150.

Additionally, a special ruling by the New Jersey Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) temporarily permits establishments with liquor licenses to expand their licensed premises into outdoor areas. To learn more, refer to the NJ ABC’s special ruling.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update - June 22, 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 169,415 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,895 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 714 including 61 deaths. In addition, over the past week, out of county cases not reported in the following spreadsheet are 29, or just over 4 cases per day. This will be added daily throughout the summer. As a comparison, 33 County residents tested positive over the last week, or roughly 4.7 individuals on average per day.

6.22.20 COVID Graphs

Although widespread testing is being done throughout New Jersey, new cases are popping up from people failing to social distance. The majority of cases testing positive in Cape May County last week were young adults who were socializing without regard to the threats of spreading coronavirus. Most of these people are short-term visitors with permanent residence from another county or state.

Although Cape May County has one of the lowest numbers of positive COVID-19 cases in the State, it is important to remember that when summer populations swell, the chances of disease spread are much higher. Cape May County can see more than half million people on an average non-holiday summer weekend. Without protection, crowded settings and social gatherings are prime conditions for contracting the disease.

“It is important for our business community and visitors to understand the importance of proper social distancing, hand hygiene, and wearing a mask,” said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton. “These are going to be the keys for continuing the reopening and keeping people safe.”

Cape Regional Medical Center is reporting that many young people between the age of 17 and 32 are showing up at the urgent cares and the emergency room with symptoms of coronavirus.

The New Jersey State Health Department requires the local health departments to document positive cases to their permanent address. Therefore, out of county or out of state visitors who test positive are not counted in the overall numbers for Cape May County. As such, the Cape May County report will list out of county positives separately and will not be reflected in the New Jersey State numbers.

As these numbers continue to grow among this age group it is obvious that social distancing measures are not being followed. The key elements to reducing the spread of the coronavirus involve social distancing, proper hand hygiene and wearing face masks when you can’t social distance. Yet there are still people who refuse to wear masks to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

Recent studies indicate that without a mask, social distancing or any other preventive measures, the risk of transmitting the coronavirus is 17.4%. Add a mask or respirator, and that number drops to 3.1%. With less than 3.28 feet (1 meter) of distance and no other protective measures, research found the risk of transmission was 12.8%. With more than 3.28 feet of distance, it’s 2.6%.

While the Stage 2 reopening of business plans in New Jersey require the use of masks, gloves, sanitizer and social distancing elements to stay safe, it is socializing activities where precautions are sometimes neglected. As such, the Cape May County Health Department is launching a social media educational safety campaign targeting this age group with social distancing and masks wearing precautions.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update June 20, 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 168,834 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,857 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 708 including 61 deaths.

6.20.20 graph 1

6.20.20 graph 2

Outdoor municipal and private-club swimming pools will be able to reopen on June 22. Summer camps will be able to use their pools when they reopen on July 6.

To help reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Department of Health has issued the following social distancing and mitigation guidance that must be followed:

  • Staff must be screened for fever and symptoms on entering.
  • Facilities are urged to stagger access to entry and exit points to avoid congregation, and reduce capacity to 50% for the facility and grounds.
  • Social distancing of six feet is also required while in the water, as well as on the pool deck, with the exception of immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners.
  • A sign-in sheet is to be maintained for all staff and patrons to facilitate potential contact tracing efforts.
  • Patrons can use their own water play equipment, such as goggles, snorkels, fins, kickboards, pool noodles and toys, but sharing is prohibited and such equipment cannot be rented for patrons’ use.
  • Staff and pool-goers are encouraged to wear a cloth face covering outside of the pool when social distancing of six feet cannot be maintained, with the exception of children under age 2 and lifeguards on active duty.
  • Sharing furniture and equipment such as lounge chairs, towels, umbrellas and other equipment provided to patrons is prohibited except among immediate family members, caretakers, household members or romantic partners. Cleaning and disinfecting are required after each use.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update June 19, 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 168,496 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,835 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 705 including 61 deaths.


On Monday, June 22, personal care services will resume in New Jersey, including:

  • Beauty salons;
  • Barber shops;
  • Cosmetology shops
  • Spas, including day spas and medical spas – but not saunas, steam rooms, or shared bathing facilities;
  • Electrology facilities;
  • Hair braiding shops;
  • Massage parlors;
  • Nail salons;
  • Tanning salons; and
  • Tattoo parlors.

Businesses licensed by the New Jersey State Board of Cosmetology and Hairstyling and the New Jersey Board of Massage and Bodywork Therapy must follow the comprehensive health and safety standards issued by the Division of Consumer Affairs, including:

  • Limiting services to appointment-only;
  • Performing prescreening and temperature checks of clients and staff prior to entering the facility;
  • Ensuring staff-client pairs remain at least six feet apart unless separated by physical barriers;
  • Requiring use of personal protective equipment, and requiring clients to wear face coverings at all times, regardless of the service they are receiving, unless face down on a massage table or where doing so would inhibit an individual’s health;
  • Adopting enhanced cleaning and disinfection practices; and
  • Staying informed about new developments and guidance related to COVID-19.

Tattoo parlors and tanning salons must follow health and safety standards issued by the Department of Health, including:

  • Requiring appointments;
  • Performing prescreening and temperature checks of clients and staff prior to entering the facility
  • Recommending clients wait in cars or away from facility if the waiting area cannot accommodate social distancing;
  • Requiring face coverings; and
  • Adopting appropriate infection control, disinfection, and sanitization practices.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update - 6/18/20

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 168,107 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,800 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 694 including 61 deaths. Sadly, we are announcing the passing of a 79-year-old male from Middle Township.

“My thoughts are with the family and friends during this sad time,” said Cape May County Freeholder Jeff Pierson.

 

6.18.20 graph 1

6.18.20 graph 2

As of June 15, "essential" retail stores such as supermarkets, pharmacies, and convenience stores and "non-essential retail stores" such as clothing retailers, shoe stores, and electronics shops are allowed to open, but must follow social distancing and other mitigation protocols.

Customers

  • If you are quarantined or in home isolation, do not leave your home. If you must leave home to access essential goods, please go at non-peak times. Retail food stores have been encouraged to maintain separate operating hours for senior citizens and other high-risk populations.
  • You should wear a face covering whenever you leave your home and MUST wear one when shopping at essential retail businesses, entering a restaurant or bar to pick up takeout orders, or when traveling on public transportation. Keep your visit as brief as possible, and go alone if possible.
  • When shopping and standing in line, please keep six feet between yourself and other customers/staff.
  • Please do not enter a retail facility if you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (such as fever or a cough), have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or are undergoing a quarantine for potential exposure to COVID-19.

Employees

  • If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (such as fever or a cough), have been diagnosed with COVID-19, or are undergoing a quarantine for potential exposure to COVID-19, do not report to work.
  • Must use a face covering. Your employer is required to provide materials for this purpose.
  • Under Executive Order 107, if your job can be performed from home, you should be performing it at home. Your employer should permit you to do so. If you believe your employer is violating Executive Order 107, please visit https://covid19.nj.gov/violation.
  • Keep six feet of distance from customers and co-workers in the store.
  • Please wash your hands with soap and water or alcohol based sanitizer frequently, and particularly after contact with shared public surfaces.

Requirements for Retail Businesses

  • Immediately separate and send home workers who appear to have COVID-19 symptoms;
  • Promptly notify workers of any known exposure to COVID-19, subject to confidentiality requirements in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA);
  • Clean and disinfect the worksite in accordance with CDC guidelines when a worker has been diagnosed with COVID-19;
  • Continue to follow all guidelines and directives issued by the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH), the CDC, and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) for maintaining a clean, safe and healthy work environment.
  • Businesses must provide face coverings and gloves to all employees, and employees are required to wear face coverings and gloves while on the premises.
  • Limit occupancy to 50% of maximum store capacity at one time;
  • Establish hours of operation specifically for the exclusive use of high-risk individuals;
  • Install a physical barrier, such as a shield guard, between customers and cashiers/baggers where possible and anywhere you cannot maintain 6 feet of distance;
  • Require regular hand washing, coughing and sneezing etiquette, and proper tissue usage and disposal;
  • Provide employees break time for regular hand washing;
  • Arrange for contactless pay options, pickup, or delivery of goods wherever possible;
  • Provide hand sanitizer and wipes to staff and customers;
  • Frequently sanitize high-touch areas like restrooms, credit card machines, keypads, counters and shopping carts;
  • Require infection control practices such as regular hand washing, coughing and sneezing etiquette, and proper tissue usage;
  • Place conspicuous signage at entrances and throughout the store alerting staff and customers to the required 6 feet of distance;
  • Demarcate 6 feet of spacing in check-out lines to demonstrate appropriate social distancing;
  • Require workers and customers to wear cloth face coverings, and require workers to wear gloves. A business must provide, at its own expense, these face coverings and gloves for employees. Customers may be exempted if it would inhibit their health, or if under two years of age. If a customer refuses, they must be denied entry, unless the business is providing medication, medical supplies, or food, in which case another method of pickup should be provided.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update - 6/17/20

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 167,703 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,769 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 690 including 60 deaths.

6.17.20 Graph 2



6.17.20 Graph 1


Food and beverage establishments open for outdoor dining must adopt the following protocols and policies:

  • Ensure all areas designated for food and/or beverage consumption conform to applicable local, State, and Federal regulations;
  • Limit capacity to a number that ensure patrons can remain six feet apart from all other patrons, except for those with whom they are sharing a table;
  • Ensure that tables seating individual groups are six feet apart in all directions and that individual seats in any shared area that is not reserved for individual groups, such as an outdoor bar area, are also six feet apart in all directions
  • Prohibit patrons from entering the indoor premises of the food or beverage establishment, except to walk through such premises when entering or exiting the food or beverage establishment in order to access the outdoor area, or to use the restroom;
  • Individuals are allowed to tour restaurant facilities for event-planning purposes, but must wear face coverings at all times and the facility may not provide food or drink tastings or samplings;
  • Require patrons to wear a face covering while inside the indoor premises of the food or beverage establishment, unless the patron has a medical reason for not doing so or is a child under two years of age;
  • Prohibit smoking in any outdoor areas designated for the consumption of food and/or beverages; and

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update 6/16/20

New Jersey has 167,426 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,727 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 685 including 60 deaths. 

Covid Data 6/16/20


Youth sports summer camps that are permitted to open on or after July 6, 2020


Youth sports summer camps that are permitted to open on or after July 6, 2020, must follow all applicable summer camp guidance, available here, in addition to these Standards for Sports Activities. 


Inter-team games, scrimmages, and tournaments are permitted for low-risk sports, such as golf and individual running events (a more complete list is available below). 

Contact sports, which are defined as any sports categorized as medium or high risk (a more complete list is available below), must limit activities exclusively to no-contact drills, practices, and simulations of game situations as of June 22. By July 6, it is anticipated that traditional practices and competitions will be able to resume for medium-risk sports, such as baseball, softball, basketball, and soccer, and by July 20, it is anticipated that competitions will be able to resume for high-risk sports, such as football.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

What to Expect if You Get a Call from a Contact Tracer

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 167,103 total COVID-19 cases and 12,676 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 680 including 60 deaths.

COVID Data Graphs

“As testing continues to increase in New Jersey, so does the number of contact tracers. Contact tracers are a vital part in stopping the spread of COVID-19, because their investigations can help pinpoint a source and anyone that has possibly been exposed,” said Kevin Thomas, Cape May County Health Officer. 

A contact tracer begins an investigation within 24 hours of a positive case being identified. The contact tracer will call you, identify themselves, and ask you a series of questions. The most important part of the investigation is compiling the contact list. The contact list can link that individual to another positive COVID-19 case and identify anyone that has been exposed. A contract tracer will not ask for the following information:

  • Social security numbers 
  • Bank or credit card information
  • Health insurance information
  • Immigration status, or criminal history

After the investigation is performed the contact tracer will follow-up with anyone that had a possible exposure to the COVID-19 case to determine if an individual has symptoms and needs to self-isolate. If you have any questions about contact tracing, feel free to call (609) 465-1200. 

Stay informed on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, World Health Organization at www.who.int, New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net and like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update June 14, 2020

New Jersey has 166,881 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,625 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 674 including 60 deaths. Today it is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of three residents an 88-year-old female from Upper Township, a 71-year-old female from Lower Township and a 55-year-old male from Dennis Township. 

“Our deepest condolences to the families of these loved ones,” said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton. “May your memories give you peace and comfort.”

Covid-19 Data Graphs

How can I cope with stress during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Remember to take care of your physical and mental health as you continue to provide important services to people with disabilities. It is important for you to maintain healthy behaviors, manage stress, and seek additional support during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some important steps to take to help you manage and cope with stress:

  • Take care of your body. 

    • Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditate.
    • Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals.
    • Exercise regularly.
    • Get plenty of sleep.
    • Avoid alcohol and drugs.
  • Make time to unwind and remind yourself that strong feelings will fade. Try to do some other activities you enjoy.
  • Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories. It can be upsetting to hear about the crisis and see images repeatedly.
  • Connect with others in a safe way (maintaining social distancing). Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling.

If you are feeling overwhelmed with emotions like sadness, depression, anxiety, or thoughts of hurting or killing yourself or others:

During this pandemic, it is critical that you recognize what stress looks like, take steps to build your resilience and cope with stress, and know where to go if you need help.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update June 13, 2020

New Jersey has 166,605 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,589 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 672 including 57 deaths. Sadly, we are announcing the passing of an 86-year-old female from Dennis Township.

“Please accept my deepest condolences for your family’s loss,” said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton. “Words cannot even begin to express my sorrow.”


Covid-19 Data GraphsWhat if my client or someone they live with has been exposed to COVID-19, has symptoms of COVID-19, or tests positive for COVID-19?

  • Encourage your client to contact their healthcare provider or help them contact their provider if assistance is needed. Clients may need help accessing telehealth.
  • If hospitalization for your client is not needed, your client may require assistance with home care for COVID-19. 
    • See guidance for implementing home care of people not requiring hospitalization.
    • Follow recommended infection prevention and control measures, including the use of recommended PPE.
  • Follow healthcare provider guidance for standard and transmission-based precautions to protect yourself when providing care for clients with COVID-19. 
    • Cloth face coverings are not PPE and should not be worn in place of proper PPE for the care of clients with known or suspected COVID-19.
  • Sick clients should also wear a facemask or cloth face covering (if tolerated). 
    • Wearing cloth face coverings may be difficult for people with sensory, cognitive, or behavioral issues. Cloth face coverings are not recommended for children under 2 or anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the covering without assistance.
  • Review the Administration for Community Living COVID-19 website regularly for information and contact your state’s Developmental Disability Administration, Disability Council, or Independent Living Council for local information regarding availability and assistance in obtaining resources.
  • If you are caring for someone with COVID-19 in their home, monitor for emergency signs, prevent the spread of germs, treat symptoms, and follow recommendations for when to end home isolation.
  • Call your healthcare provider for medical advice regarding your own health.

What if I become sick or am exposed to someone who has COVID-19?

  • Stay home and self-isolate, except to get medical care. 
    • Staying at home helps protect the people you work with who may be at greater risk of infection or severe illness from COVID-19. It also helps protect others in the community.
  • If you develop symptoms such as a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or new loss of taste or smell or you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your healthcare provider for further guidance.
  • Notify your employer, the client with disabilities and, if applicable, their guardian as soon as possible so appropriate plans for an alternate DSP can be made. The client should be monitored for COVID-19 symptoms.

Are my clients at increased risk for becoming infected or having severe illness from COVID-19?

People with one of the disability types listed may be at increased risk of becoming infected or having severe illness from COVID-19.

  • People who have limited mobility and/or who cannot avoid coming into close contact with others who may be infected
  • People who have trouble understanding information or practicing preventive measures, such as hand washing and social distancing
  • People who may not be able to communicate symptoms of illness
  • People who are blind or have low vision who rely on touch or tactile information
  • People who need alternative communication methods, such as sign language or braille, who may not have access to information

Adults with disabilities are three times more likely than adults without disabilities to have serious underlying medical conditions. They are at higher risk for serious illness from COVID-19 if they are 65 years and older, live in a long-term care facility, or have serious underlying medical conditions. 

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update June 12 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 166,164 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,489 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 671 including 56 deaths. Today, we sadly announce the passing of one of our residents, a 71-year old female from Lower Township.

“The loss of a community member has left all of us deeply saddened,” said Cape May County Freeholder Jeff Pierson. “Wishing the family peace and comfort during this hard time.”

 ***Retraction and correction from Monday June 8th’s press release – 55-year old male who passed away was not from West Cape May but was from Lower Township.


How can I protect myself and the people I work with?

As a DSP, your risk of exposure will depend on factors including the setting you work in, the number of people you provide services to, and the spread of COVID-19 in your community. Check with your employer for any specific policies and procedures related to COVID-19 and practice everyday prevention actions when working with clients without suspected or confirmed COVID-19. In addition:

  • When possible, keep at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and others in the home or community setting.
  • Wear a cloth face covering when you are at work.
  • Encourage your client to wear a cloth face covering. 

    • Wearing cloth face coverings may be difficult for people with sensory, cognitive, or behavioral issues. Cloth face coverings are not recommended for children under 2 or anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the covering without assistance.
  • If there is potential that you may be splashed or sprayed by bodily fluids during your work, use standard precautions. Personal protective equipment (PPE) includes a facemask, eye protection, disposable gloves, and a gown.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water: when entering and leaving the home or community setting; when adjusting or putting on or off facemasks or cloth face coverings; or before putting on and after taking off disposable gloves. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Learn more about proper handwashing.
  • Wear disposable gloves when touching the client (e.g., dressing, bathing/showering, transferring, toileting, feeding), handling tissues, when changing linens or doing laundry. Safely dispose of gloves after use. As noted above, wash your hands before and after taking off disposable gloves. If gloves are unavailable, wash hands immediately after touching the client or handling their belongings.
  • Launder work uniforms or clothes after each use with the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely.
  • Monitor yourself for symptoms. Do not go to work or care for others if you develop symptoms.

If you work in the home of an individual with disabilities, also practice these additional prevention actions:

  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (e.g., counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, bedside tables), and equipment (e.g., wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes, oxygen tanks and tubing, communication boards and other assistive devices).
  • Help the client plan for possible changes in service due to COVID-19. 

    • Plan for what to do if you or other DSPs get sick.
    • Create a contact list of family, friends, neighbors and local service agencies that can provide support.
    • Review with the client: 

      • How to monitor for symptoms.
      • When and how to contact their healthcare provider. Many healthcare providers have developed new ways to provide healthcare services, such as using telehealth. Help the client find out how those are arranged and any additional information.
  • Help make or update care plans or an emergency notebook. 

    • Care plans typically include important information about a person’s medical conditions, how to manage those conditions, how to contact healthcare providers, therapists and pharmacy, information on allergies, medications (names, dosages, and administration instructions), preferences (food and other), daily routines and activities.
    • This information may help the client and new DSPs provide consistent care if the usual provider is unavailable.
  • Plan at least two ways of communicating from home and work that can be used rapidly in an emergency (e.g., landline phone, cell phone, text-messaging, email). Write this information down for both you and the client. Each of you should keep a copy with you.
  • Plan to have enough household items and groceries for a few weeks, at least a 30-day supply of over the counter and prescription medicines and any medical equipment or supplies that might be needed. 

    • Some health plans allow for a 90-day refill on prescription medications.
    • Make a photocopy of prescriptions, as this may help in obtaining medications in an emergency.

If you provide services for a client in a community-based settingsuch as a group home or day program,

  • Follow any employer, facility, and program guidance for additional precautions related to COVID-19.
  • Encourage the clients you work with to practice everyday prevention actions, if possible, and assist them when needed.
  • Follow everyday prevention actions if there are no known or suspected cases of COVID-19 in the community-based setting where you work.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update June 11, 2020

New Jersey has 165,816 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,443 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 665 including 55 deaths, and it is with great sadness we have to announce the passing of two individuals, an 84-year-old female from Lower Township and an 92-year-old female from Cape May City.

“My heart goes out to the families of those who lost their loved ones,” said Cape May County Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton. “May your memories give you peace and comfort.”

6/11/20 COVID Data Charts

People with Disabilities must protect themselves from Covid-19

COVID-19 is a new disease and we are still learning how it spreads, the severity of illness it causes, and to what extent it may spread in the United States.

Disability alone may not be related to higher risk for getting COVID-19 or having severe illness. Most people with disabilities are not inherently at higher risk for becoming infected with or having severe illness from COVID-19.  However, some people with disabilities might be at a higher risk of infection or severe illness because of their underlying medical conditions.  All people seem to be at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 if they have serious underlying chronic medical conditions like chronic lung disease, a serious heart condition, or a weakened immune system. Adults with disabilities are three times more likely than adults without disabilities to have heart disease, stroke, diabetes, or cancer than adults without disabilities.

You should talk with your healthcare provider if you have a question about your health or how your health condition is being managed.

Disability Groups and Risk

If you have one of the disability types listed below, you might be at increased risk of becoming infected or having unrecognized illness.  You should discuss your risk of illness with your healthcare provider.

  • People who have limited mobility or who cannot avoid coming into close contact with others who may be infected, such as direct support providers and family members
  • People who have trouble understanding information or practicing preventive measures, such as hand washing and social distancing
  • People who may not be able to communicate symptoms of illness

Protect Yourself

If you or someone you care for are at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19, take steps to prevent getting sick. In addition to practicing everyday preventive actions, people with disabilities who have direct support providers can help protect themselves from respiratory illness in the following ways:

  • Ask your direct support provider if they are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 or if they have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19
  • Tell your direct service provider to 

    • Wash their hands when they enter your home and before and after touching you (e.g., dressing, bathing/showering, transferring, toileting, feeding), handling tissues, or when changing linens or doing laundry. Learn more about proper handwashing.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (e.g., counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, bedside tables), and equipment such as wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes, oxygen tanks and tubing, communication boards and other assistive devices. Refer to CDC’s General Recommendations for Routine Cleaning and Disinfections of Households.

Prepare

There are some additional things people with disabilities can do to prepare during the COVID-19 outbreak:

  • Plan what you will do if you or your direct support provider gets sick. Create a contact list of family, friends, neighbors and local service agencies that can provide support in case you or your direct support provider becomes ill or unavailable.
  • Plan at least two ways of communicating from home and work that can be used rapidly in an emergency (e.g., landline phone, cell phone, text-messaging, email).  Write down this information and keep it with you.
  • Have enough household items and groceries so that you will be comfortable staying home for a few weeks, at least a 30-day supply of over the counter and prescription medicines and any medical equipment or supplies that you might need. Some health plans allow for a 90-day refill on prescription medications. Consider discussing this option with your healthcare provider. Make a photocopy of prescriptions, as this may help in obtaining medications in an emergency situation.

About COVID-19

  • Coronavirus disease is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus is thought to spread mainly between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet) through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. It is also possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or eyes. For more information go to CDC’s Fact Sheet- What you need to know about coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
  • Risk of infection with COVID-19 is higher for people who are in close contact with someone known to have COVID-19, such as healthcare workers, direct support providers, and household members. Other people at higher risk for infection are those who live or have recently been in an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19.

Prevention and Treatment

There is currently no vaccine to protect against COVID-19.  The best way to prevent infection is to take everyday preventive actions, like avoiding close contact with people who are sick and washing your hands often.  There is no specific antiviral treatment for COVID-19. People with COVID-19 can seek medical care to help relieve symptoms.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


COVID-19 Update June 10, 2020

Cape May Court House- New Jersey has 165,346 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,377 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 664 including 53 deaths. 

6/10/20 COVID Data

Protecting yourself while living in shared housing

Shared or congregate housing includes apartments, condominiums, student or faculty housing, national and state park staff housing, transitional housing, and domestic violence and abuse shelters.

Shared housing residents often gather together closely for social, leisure, and recreational activities, shared dining, laundry facilities, stairwells, and elevators and may have challenges with social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Protect yourself

  • Social distance by staying at least 6 feet apart from others that you do not live with.
  • Wear cloth face coverings in any shared spaces, not including your room.
  • Seek out a “buddy” in the facility who will check on you and make sure you are getting basic necessities, including food and household essentials.
  • Everyday preventative actions everyone should take.

People at-risk

  • Keep up-to-date lists of medical conditions and medications, and periodically check to ensure you have a sufficient supply of your prescription and over-the-counter medications.
  • Contact your healthcare provider to ask about getting extra necessary medications to have on hand for a longer period of time, or to consider using a mail-order option for medications.
  • Be aware of serious symptoms of if you have underlying conditions, of COVID-19 symptoms, and know who to ask for help or when to call 911.
  • Extra steps to take if you are at-risk.



Know where to get information

  • Make sure you know how your facility is going to communicate COVID-19 information to you; email, websites, hotlines, automated text messaging, newsletters, and flyers to help communicate information on.

The facility

  • COVID-19 prevention supplies should be provided in common areas, such as soap, alcohol-based hand sanitizers that contain at least 60% alcohol, tissues, trash baskets, and, if possible, cloth face coverings that are washed or discarded after each use.
  • Non-essential volunteers and visitors in shared areas should be limited or avoided.
  • Staff should avoid entering residents’ rooms or living quarters unless it is necessary. Staff should use virtual communications and check ins (phone or video chat), as appropriate.

Common spaces

Be flexible, rules may change in common areas. Maintain 6 feet of social (physical) distance between yourself and everyone that you do not live with. This may mean there will be alternatives to activities, cancelled activities, or closed areas. If you see people in areas that are small, like stairwells and elevators, consider going one at a time. Here are some examples of how the rules in common spaces may change:

Shared kitchens, dining rooms, laundry rooms, bathrooms

  • Access should be available, but the number of people should be restricted so that everyone can stay at least 6 feet apart from one another.
  • People who are sick, their roommates, and those who have higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 should eat or be fed in their room, if possible.
  • Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, or eating utensils. Non-disposable food service items used should be handled with gloves and washed with dish soap and hot water or in a dishwasher.
  • Guidelines for doing laundry such as washing instructions and handling of dirty laundry should be posted.
  • Sinks could be an infection source and should avoid placing toothbrushes directly on counter surfaces. Totes can be used for personal items so they do not touch the bathroom countertop.

Recreational areas such as activity rooms, exercise rooms, pools, and hot tubs

  • Consider closing or restricting the number of people allowed in at one time to ensure everyone can stay at least 6 feet apart, except for essential activities only, such as water therapy.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

COVID-19 Update June 9, 2020

New Jersey has 164,796 total COVID-19 positive cases and 12,303 deaths. Total positive cases of COVID-19 infection in Cape May County is now 662 including 53 deaths. 

6/10/20 COVID Data Charts

 Stopping the spread of Covid-19 in Bars and Restaurants 

As restaurants and bars resume operations the following are considerations for ways in which operators can protect employees, customers, and communities and slow the spread of COVID-19. Restaurants and bars can make adjustments to meet the needs and circumstances of the local community. Implementation should be guided by what is feasible, practical, acceptable, and tailored to the needs of the community. These considerations are meant to supplement—not replace—any state health and safety laws, rules, and regulations with which businesses must comply.

The more an individual interacts with others, and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. The risk of COVID-19 spread increases in a restaurant or bar setting as follows:

  • Lowest Risk: Food service limited to drive-through, delivery, take-out, and curb-side pick-up.
  • More Risk: Drive-through, delivery, take-out, and curb-side pick-up emphasized. On-site dining limited to outdoor seating. Seating capacity reduced to allow tables to be spaced at least 6 feet apart.
  • Even More Risk: On-site dining with both indoor and outdoor seating. Seating capacity reduced to allow tables to be spaced at least 6 feet apart.
  • Highest Risk: On-site dining with both indoor and outdoor seating. Seating capacity not reduced and tables not spaced at least 6 feet apart.

COVID-19 is mostly spread by respiratory droplets released when people talk, cough, or sneeze. It is thought that the virus may spread to hands from a contaminated surface and then to the nose or mouth, causing infection. Therefore, personal prevention practices (such as handwashing, staying home when sick) and environmental cleaning and disinfection are important principles that are covered in this document. Fortunately, there are a number of actions operators of restaurants and bars can take to help lower the risk of COVID-19 exposure and spread.


Promoting Behaviors that Reduce Spread

Restaurants and bars may consider implementing several strategies to encourage behaviors that reduce the spread of COVID-19 among employees and customers.

  • Staying Home when Appropriate 

    • Educate employees about when they should stay home and when they can return to work. 

      • Actively encourage employees who are sick or have recently had a close contact with a person with COVID-19 to stay home. Develop policies that encourage sick employees to stay at home without fear of reprisal, and ensure employees are aware of these policies.
      • Employees should stay home if they have tested positive for or are showing COVID-19 symptoms.
      • Employees who have recently had a close contact with a person with COVID-19 should also stay home and monitor their health.
      • CDC’s criteria can help inform when employees they may return to work: 

        • If they have been sick with COVID-19
        • If they have recently had a close contact with a person with COVID-19
  • Hand Hygiene and Respiratory Etiquette 

    • Require frequent employee handwashing (e.g. before, during, and after preparing food; after touching garbage) with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and increase monitoring to ensure adherence.
    • Encourage employees to cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue. Used tissues should be thrown in the trash and hands washed immediately with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. 

      • If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Cloth Face Coverings 

    • Require the use of cloth face coverings among all staff, as feasible. Face coverings are most essential in times when physical distancing is difficult. Information should be provided to staff and students on proper use, removal, and washing of cloth face coverings. 

      • Note: Cloth face coverings should not be placed on: 

        • Babies and children younger than 2 years old
        • Anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious
        • Anyone who is incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance
    • Cloth face coverings are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms. Cloth face coverings are not surgical masks, respirators, or personal protective equipment.
  • Adequate Supplies 

    • Ensure adequate supplies to support healthy hygiene behaviors. Supplies include soap, hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol (placed on every table, if supplies allow), paper towels, tissues, disinfectant wipes, cloth face coverings (as feasible), and no-touch/foot pedal trash cans.
  • Signs and Messages 

    • Post signs in highly visible locations (e.g., at entrances, in restrooms) that promote everyday protective and describe how to of germs such as by properly washing hands and properly wearing a cloth face covering.
    • Include messages (for example, videos) about behaviors that prevent spread of COVID-19 when communicating with vendors, staff, and customers (such as on business websites, in emails, and on social media accounts).
    • Find free CDC print and digital resources at the bars and restaurant page, as well as on CDC’s communications resources main page.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.



If you are Immunocompromised, Protect yourself from COVID-19

Many conditions and treatments can weaken a person’s immune system (making them “immunocompromised”). Some of these include:

  • Cancer
  • Bone marrow transplant
  • Solid organ transplant
  • Stem cells for cancer treatment
  • Genetic immune deficiencies
  • HIV
  • Use of oral or intravenous corticosteroids or other medicines called immunosuppressants that lower the body’s ability to fight some infections (e.g., mycophenolate, sirolimus, cyclosporine, tacrolimus, etanercept, rituximab)

Risk of Severe Illness from COVID- 19

People with weakened immune systems are at higher risk of getting severely sick from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. They may also remain infectious for a longer period of time than others with COVID-19, but we cannot confirm this until we learn more about this new virus.

Prevent COVID-19

If you are immunocompromised, the best way to prevent COVID-19 is to avoid being exposed to this virus. For details, see CDC’s advice for what you can do to prepare for COVID-19 and how to protect yourself and others.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. 
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid leaving home as much as possible and practice social distancing. 
    • If you must leave home, avoid other people as much as possible by practicing social distancing. Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet (2 meters) between you and people outside your household.
    • Avoid large gatherings or places where people congregate.
    • Have supplies, food, and medicine delivered to your home.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering when around others to protect other people in case you are infected, and ask others to do the same. 
    • Remember, do NOT place cloth face coverings on children younger than 2 years old, anyone who has trouble breathing, or anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cover without assistance.
  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

Steps You Can Take to Protect Your Health

  • Continue your regular treatment plan. Don’t stop any medications or treatments without talking to your doctor. 
    • Discuss any concerns about your treatment with your doctor.
    • Keep your regularly scheduled medical appointments. 

      • Talk to your doctor about steps they are taking to reduce risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the office.
      • Use telehealth services whenever possible if recommended by your doctor.
    • Ensure that you are getting necessary tests prescribed by your doctor.
    • Seek urgent medical care if you are feeling unwell.
  • Talk to your doctor, insurer, and pharmacist about getting an emergency supply of prescription medications. Make sure you have at least 30 days of prescription medications, over-the-counter medicines, and supplies on hand in case you need or want to stay home for several weeks. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about ways to receive your medications by mail.
  • Take steps to care for your emotional health. Fear and anxiety about COVID-19 can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions. It is natural to feel concerned or stressed about COVID-19. Learn more about stress and coping with anxiety here. Call your healthcare provider if stress gets in the way of your daily activities for several days in a row.
  • If you are feeling overwhelmed with emotions like sadness, depression, or anxiety, or feel like you want to harm yourself or others: 

Treatment of COVID-19

  • At this time, there is no Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved treatment for COVID-19. There is no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. Treatment is currently aimed at relieving symptoms, and for hospitalized patients, supporting vital organ function during severe illness.

Additional Information for Specific Conditions & Risk Factors

If you have cancer or have survived cancer

If you have cancer now or had cancer in the past, you might need to take special steps to protect your health:

  • Chemotherapy is an important tool to treat cancer. Although some types of chemotherapy can weaken the immune system, cancer patients and survivors should continue to take their chemotherapy as directed by their doctor.
  • Do not change your cancer treatment plan without discussing it with your doctor.
  • Watch out for fever. Take your temperature any time you feel warm, flushed, chilled, very fatigued, or not well. Call your doctor right away if you have a temperature of 100.4ºF (38ºC) or higher. 

    • Know the signs and symptoms of infection. Infection during the course of cancer treatment can be very serious. Call your doctor right away if you notice any of the signs and symptoms of an infection.
  • Find out from your doctor when your white blood cell count is likely to the be the lowest, since this is when you’re most at risk for infection. 

    • If you have to go to the emergency room, tell the person checking you in that you are a cancer patient undergoing chemotherapy. Fever during chemotherapy treatment is a medical emergency and you should be seen quickly.
  • Discuss any concerns about your chemotherapy or other cancer treatments with your oncologist and primary healthcare provider.
  • Learn more about Types of Cancer, Risk Factors and Screening for Cancer and Preventing Infections while undergoing treatment for cancer.

If you have had a bone marrow transplant, solid organ transplant, or stem cells for cancer treatment

If you take medications that weaken your immune system, called immunosuppressant medications:

  • Do not change or stop taking medicines without talking to your doctor. Stopping or changing medicine can cause serious health problems.

If you were born with immune deficiencies

Some people are born with or develop immune deficiencies due to genetics. Examples include common variable immune deficiency, selective IgA deficiency, severe combined immunodeficiency, chronic granulomatous disease, and complement deficiencies.

  • If you take medicines to help boost your immune system, do not change or stop them without talking to your doctor.

If you have HIV

The risk of serious illness from COVID-19 for people with HIV is not yet known. If you have HIV and a low CD4 cell count or are not on HIV treatment, you might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

  • Do not change or stop taking medicines without talking to your doctor. Stopping or changing medicine can cause serious health problems.
  • For more details, see CDC’s Information about COVID for people with HIV.

If you are using oral or intravenous corticosteroids or other medicines that lower your immune system’s response

Some medical conditions are treated with medications that can weaken the immune system; these medicines are called immunosuppressants. Common medical conditions that are sometimes treated with immunosuppressants include rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and inflammatory bowel disease.

  • Do not change or stop taking medicines without talking to your doctor. Stopping or changing medicine can cause serious health problems.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.


People with Moderate to Severe Asthma

This information is based on what we currently know about the spread and severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).

Risk of Severe Illness from COVID-19

People with moderate to severe asthma may be at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19.  COVID-19 can affect your respiratory tract (nose, throat, lungs), cause an asthma attack, and possibly lead to pneumonia and acute respiratory disease.

Treatment

There is currently no specific treatment for or vaccine to prevent COVID-19.  The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.

Prepare for COVID-19

  • Stock up on supplies.
  • Take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others.
  • When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick.
  • Clean your hands often by washing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid crowds and people who are sick.
  • Avoid cruise travel and non-essential air travel.
  • During a COVID-19 outbreak in your community, stay home as much as possible to further reduce your risk of being exposed.
  • If someone in your home is sick, have them stay away from the rest of the household to reduce the risk of spreading the virus in your home.
  • Avoid sharing personal household items such as cups and towels.

Follow your Asthma Action Plan

  • Keep your asthma under control by following your asthma action plan.
  • Continue your current medications, including any inhalers with steroids in them (“steroids” is another word for corticosteroids).
  • Don’t stop any medications or change your asthma treatment plan without talking to your healthcare provider.
  • Discuss any concerns about your treatment with your healthcare provider.
  • Talk to your healthcare provider, insurer, and pharmacist about creating an emergency supply of prescription medications, such as asthma inhalers. Make sure that you have 30 days of non-prescription medications and supplies on hand too in case you need to stay home for a long time.
  • Know how to use your inhaler.
  • Avoid your asthma triggers.
  • As more cases of COVID-19 are discovered and our communities take action to combat the spread of disease, it is natural for some people to feel concerned or stressed. 

Clean and disinfect things you or your family touch frequently

  • If possible, have someone who doesn’t have asthma do the cleaning and disinfecting. When they use cleaning and disinfecting products, have them: 
    • Make sure that people with asthma are not in the room.
    • Minimize use of disinfectants that can cause an asthma attack.
    • Open windows or doors and use a fan that blows air outdoors.
    • Clean and disinfect surfaces like phones, remotes, tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks daily.
    • Always follow the instructions on the product label.
    • Spray or pour spray products onto a cleaning cloth or paper towel instead of spraying the product directly onto the cleaning surface (if the product label allows).

If you have symptoms

Contact your health care provider to ask about your symptoms.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

CAPE MAY COUNTY REPORTS NO NEW CASES OF COVID-19, DETAILS RELEASED ON PERFORMED TESTS

Cape May County is reporting no new cases of COVID-19 today for the first time since April 5. While the numbers of COVID-19 continue to decline in the County, progress continues to be made in expanding testing options for the disease. Because of the actions taken by residents of social distancing, hand washing, and wearing a mask, the positivity rate has dropped as the amount of testing options increased. For the week between May 17 to May 23, it is calculated that the positivity rate in tests were 2.5%.

During this time, at least 2,174 tests were performed, or 310 per day. In total, 56 positive tests were returned during this stretch. The tests are sent to various labs across the Country to process. While all the positive tests are returned, it is unclear if all the negatives do and the number of tests run per day during that period could be higher as a result. This would only potentially decrease the positivity rate.

“Our Health Department has done amazing work with the health community and now private companies who are stepping up to providing COVID-19 testing,” said Freeholder Jeff Pierson, liaison to the Health Department. “We continue to see more testing options for residents and encourage anyone who thinks they might have symptoms to get tested.”

Testing locations for COVID-19 now include Cape Regional Urgent Care in Wildwood, Marmora, and Cape May Court House, Cape Regional Hospital, Complete Care Health Network, and CVS in Seaville. Proof of insurance is not needed at the Cape Regional Urgent Care locations. There is also other out of County testing options for people, like the State testing facilities. 

“People have taken great personal responsibility in keeping safe and we have seen the results,” said Freeholder Director Gerald M. Thornton. “As we continue to open up our State, we ask people to continue to be smart about keeping six feet distance or wearing a mask when proper social distancing can’t take place.”

Six Feet Saves Successfully Launched in Cape May County

“As Memorial Weekend is underway Cape May County Department of Health wants to stress, we are not out of the woodwork yet. We urge our residents and visitors to continue to take precaution against COVID-19 to protect themselves and others. When outside a mask is not mandatory, but is recommended, if you are unable to keep at least six feet from others,” said Kevin Thomas, Cape May County Health Officer.

Cape May County Department of Health is proud to announce their social distance campaign, Six Feet Saves has successfully launched on May 15, 2020 in Cape May. Since the launch, Cape May County’s Social Distance Ambassadors have been to Wildwood’s Boardwalk and Ocean City’s Boardwalk. Six Feet Saves is an education campaign that will be implemented to remind individuals to keep their distance to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Social Distance Ambassadors will be out in the community thanking individuals who continue taking preventive action against COVID-19, such as social distancing, wearing a cloth mask over their nose, and mouth if they cannot social distance, and washing their hands frequently. They will also be giving out education materials to individuals that are interested. 

Social Distancing Ambassadors will be wearing vests with the county seal on them, so they can be easily identified. The Six Feet Saves Social Distance Ambassador team will be made up of Medical Reserve Corp. members and Cape May County Department of Health staff. Medical Reserve Corp. is a volunteer program comprised of medical and non-medical individuals. To learn more about Medical Reserve Corp. and how you can volunteer you can visit cmchealth.net or call (609) 465-1187. 

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

Social Distancing Ambassador Program Future Dates 

The Social Distancing Ambassador program by the Cape May County Health Department has announced more dates after its initial positive test run. The program will continue in Stone Harbor on Friday and run until June 13th, with the possibility of more dates being added down the line. The Social Distancing Ambassadors includes two representatives from the Cape May County Health Department and volunteers from the Reserve Medical Corp of Cape May County who visit the different shore towns.

The program has been designed to provide positive reinforcement for people that are properly socially distancing or wearing masks. There is no enforcement element involved with this initiative. Information is also available for people wanting the latest COVID-19 safety information. Proper sanitation and hand hygiene are followed throughout the two hours while providing information to the public.

“This program has gotten a great reception and has gotten Cape May County a lot of positive attention,” said Freeholder Jeff Pierson, liaison to the Health Department. “Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton had a great idea that we were able to implement with Health Officer Kevin Thomas. The entire Health Department has been phenomenal through this entire pandemic.”

Below is the schedule of the dates, municipalities, and times the Social Distancing Ambassadors will be out throughout Cape May County:

May 22 – Stone Harbor – 10 A.M. until Noon

May 28 – Sea Isle City – 10 A.M. until Noon

May 29 – Avalon – 10 A.M. until Noon

May 29 – Cape May – 1 P.M. until 3 P.M.

May 30 – Stone Harbor – 10 A.M. until Noon

June 5 – Wildwood – 10 A.M. until Noon

June 5 – Avalon – 1 P.M. until 3 P.M.

June 6 – Ocean City – 10 A.M. until Noon

June 12 – Cape May – 10 A.M. until Noon

June 12 – Sea Isle City – 1 P.M. until 3 P.M.

June 13 – Wildwood – 10 A.M. until Noon

“I want to thank our staff with the Cape May County Health Department,” said Thornton. “We are blessed to have a tremendous staff working for the County during this very difficult time. Encouraging people to take proper safety precautions is one of the ways we will safely get our County reopen as we continue to work with the Governor’s office.”

Contact Tracing Information and Job Portal

Contact tracing, a core disease control measure employed by local and state health department personnel for decades, is a key strategy for preventing further spread of COVID-19. Contact tracing is part of the process of supporting patients with suspected or confirmed infection.

In contact tracing, public health staff work with a patient to help them recall everyone with whom they have had close contact during the timeframe while they may have been infectious. Public health staff then warn these exposed individuals (contacts) of their potential exposure as rapidly and sensitively as possible.

Contacts are provided with education, information, and support to understand their risk, what they should do to separate themselves from others who are not exposed, monitor themselves for illness, and the possibility that they could spread the infection to others even if they themselves do not feel ill.

Contacts are encouraged to stay home and maintain social distance from others (at least 6 feet) until 14 days after their last exposure, in case they also become ill. They should monitor themselves by checking their temperature twice daily and watching for cough or shortness of breath. To the extent possible, public health staff should check in with contacts to make sure they are self-monitoring and have not developed symptoms. Contacts who develop symptoms should promptly isolate themselves and notify public health staff. They should be promptly evaluated for infection and for the need for medical care.

Recently, Governor Murphy highlighted the state’s effort to build a contact-tracing corps that will supplement the roughly 800 staff and volunteers now doing this work on a local and county level. The governor said the state would tap public health students at Rutgers University and other colleges for assistance, plus contract with a staffing company to hire additional tracers. 

Murphy said contact tracers will be paid $25 an hour, and will either be employed by the state, Rutgers or the contractor, officials said. (Interested individuals can also sign up online.)

https://covid19.nj.gov/forms/tracer

The state will foot the bill for a new technology platform to provide training and data-collection functions for all contact tracers, regardless of where they are deployed, officials said. Their findings will be compiled in a central state database, although the privacy of those who test positive will be protected, according to DOH.

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit https://capemaycountynj.gov/ or Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.

Social Distance Ambassadors are Coming to your Community 

5/12/20- Cape May County Department of Health is proud to announce their social distance campaign, Six Feet Saves. Six Feet Saves is an educational campaign that will be implemented to remind individuals to keep their distance to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Social Distance Ambassadors will be monitoring high volume areas, such as boardwalks, to remind individuals to keep their six feet, and to give educational materials on how to prevent being exposed.

“As public places begin to reopen it is important to continue to take proper precautions, such as wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and social distancing. Cape May County Department of Health wants to remind residents and visitors to continue taking action to slow the spread of COVID-19. By protecting yourself and others you can help save lives,” said Kevin Thomas, Cape May County Health Officer.

Cape May County Department of Health’s education campaign Six Feet Saves, will launch on May 15, 2020 in Cape May. The campaign will be comprised of Social Distance Ambassadors who will remind individuals to keep their six feet and give out educational materials on how to prevent being exposed to COVID-19. Social Distancing Ambassadors will be wearing vests with the county seal on them so they can be easily identified.

Six Feet Saves Lives Social Distance Ambassador team will be made up of Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) members and Cape May County Department of Health staff. MRC is a volunteer program made up of medical and non-medical individuals. To learn more about MRC and how you can volunteer visit cmchealth.net or call (609) 463-6692. Visit the following link to volunteer to be for the Social Distance Ambassador.

For additional information on what Cape May County is doing to slow the spread of COVID-19 visit www.cmchealth.net. You can also like Cape May County Department of Health on Facebook or call (609) 463-1187.

As Coronavirus (COVID-19) Cases Continue to Increase Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Recommends Wearing a Cloth Face Covering in Public Settings

4/18/20- “The number one prevention method against COVID-19 remains social distancing. Individuals should only leave their homes for essential travel. When essential travel is necessary to a public place that social distancing is difficult the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, recommends the use of a cloth face covering to slow the spread of COVID-19.” said Kevin Thomas, Cape May County Health Officer. 

CDC is recommending the use of cloth face masks to help individuals who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others. The cloth mask should be used in public settings where social distancing can be difficult, for example grocery stores and pharmacies. Cloth face coverings can be made from common household items at low cost. The cloth face covering that are being recommended by the CDC are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators, these supplies should be reserved for healthcare works and other medical first responders. 

Cloth Face Coverings Should: 

  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face.
  • Be secured with ties or ear loops.
  • Include multiple layers of fabric.
  • Allow for breathing without restriction.
  • Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape.

Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. Cloth face coverings should be routinely washed depending on the frequency of use. The face covering can be simple washed in the washing machine. When removing the cloth face covering it is important not to touch one’s eyes, nose, and mouth until they have washed their hands. 

Call your healthcare professional if you have concerns about COVID-19 and your underlying health conditions. Stay up to date on the current situation as it evolves. Some reliable sources are New Jersey Poison Information and Education System hotline at 211 or 1-800-962-1253, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at www.cdc.gov, the World Health Organization at www.who.int, the New Jersey Department of Health at COVID19.nj.gov. For additional information visit Cape May County Department of Health at www.cmchealth.net, also like us on Facebook.