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There have been many recent changes regarding COVID-19 restrictions and vaccination eligibility, see below for a detailed update.
New Jersey has developed an extensive network of vaccination sites to serve those currently eligible for vaccination. Though there have been sharp increases in supply to NJ over the last week, vaccine is still very limited and will be for some time. At this time, there are over 250 vaccination centers across the State. Many are now at or close to their maximum throughput capacity.
Other than expanding vaccination centers to include more chain pharmacy locations, the State will not authorize additional vaccine providers, vaccination centers, or clinics for the foreseeable future. Opening additional, undersupplied locations will not contribute to the efficient administration of vaccine. Therefore, the strategy is to provide a steady and reliable supply of vaccine to the existing sites and chain pharmacies so they can operate at full capacity, as quickly as possible. Local health departments are trained to support the mega-sites and other existing sites where possible.
The vaccination effort continues to unfold, rapidly. For more information on the progress of the effort and other aspects of New Jersey’s vaccination program, please follow this link: https://covid19.nj.gov/pages/vaccine
Currently, the vaccines are available to:
Beginning on Monday, April 19, 2021, everyone who lives, works or studies in New Jersey and is 16 or older will be eligible to schedule an appointment for a coronavirus vaccine
Note: If you make your first dose appointment by booking directly with a vaccine clinic, you should schedule a second dose appointment when you have your first appointment. If you did not receive a second dose appointment at the time of receiving your first dose, you need to contact the site where you received your first vaccine for assistance scheduling the second dose.
Residency in Morris County is not required for this Vaccination Center. At this time, COVID vaccinations at this, or any site, are for the eligible priority groups specified above, only.
Registration Instructions for Eligible Priority Groups at the Mega Vaccination Center, Sears Building, Rockaway Townsquare Mall – This site requires those seeking vaccinations at this location to register directly with this vaccination center.
Anti-Viral Therapies Continue to be approved and they have become more available at Healthcare Facilities Across the Country
For additional information about COVID vaccines, therapeutics and Emergency Use Authorizations (EUA) please see the FDA and CDC links below:
Nationally, the number of new infections has stabilized. In New Jersey, the numbers of new COVID infections and hospitalizations are near stable, but are slowly trending upward. The numbers of deaths are near stable, but are slowly declining.
The rate of transmission in NJ is fluctuating in recent weeks between 1.0 and 1.10 Anything above 1.0 is considered concerning. The higher the number, the greater the risk of viral spread throughout the community. As of April 8, 2021, all six regions of the State are now back to being classified as HIGH (Orange) COVID Activity. Four regions had fallen into the MODERATE (yellow) COVID Activity classification for a short period a few weeks ago, but they have all gradually returned to HIGH (Orange) COVID Activity. The level of new COVID infections in all of the municipalities within the Pequannock Health Department’s jurisdictions are relatively stable, but trending upward.
The increases in new infections are largely because of the following:
Please note, the daily cumulative numbers of infected individuals displayed by municipality in the Morris County link below are subject to fluctuate. At times, a percentage of cases are assigned to the wrong municipalities. Also, labs sometimes mistakenly enter the healthcare provider’s address rather than the patients’ addresses, which may skew the numbers to some extent. Corrections are made over time, as inaccuracies are discovered. However, it should be emphasized that the trends illustrated by the data are generally accurate.
Please see the links below for the NJDOH COVID Activity Dashboard, the NJ Regional COVID Activity Reports and the links to the Morris County Health Department COVID Websites. Morris County links include daily updates of cumulative numbers of cases by municipality and the COVID Activity and Risk Level in each of the State’s six regions.
Statewide and Regional COVID Activity Report and Risk Level by Region
Morris County-Based COVID Information including Data for Total Positive Cases by Municipality and COVID Testing Availability
Morris County has transitioned away from the Vault At-Home testing option, however, please be advised that symptomatic individuals who are unable to leave their homes will still have the ability to order an At-Home COVID test via pixel by Lab Corps, which will remain posted on the Morris County website.
No-Cost In-Person Testing at the County College of Morris (CCM)
Morris County is now offering no-cost, in-person saliva COVID testing at County College of Morris. On Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 9am to 4 pm.
Directions and Precautions
Parking at CCM for people with appointments will be reserved in Lot 6, where individuals using public transportation to and from CCM also may board or disembark from a bus. To find directions to CCM and learn more about public transportation options to and from the campus, please go to the CCM website.
List of Testing Sites in Morris County
1. A 14-day quarantine is preferred for all individuals and groups where feasible. There are certain narrow circumstances of economic or other hardships that might allow for quarantine periods to be reduced to 7 or 10 days.
2. Persons not needing to quarantine:
A. COVID-19 positive (lab-confirmed viral test) within 3 months: Persons who tested positive for COVID-19 (lab-confirmed viral test), clinically recovered from COVID-19 and then have close contact with someone with COVID-19 within 3 months does not need to be quarantined or retested. However, persons who have close contact with someone with COVID-19 more than 3 months after the initial infection should quarantine.
B. Fully Vaccinated Persons within 3 months: Vaccinated persons should continue to follow current guidance to protect themselves and others, including wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds, avoiding poorly ventilated spaces, covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands often, following CDC travel guidance, and following any applicable workplace or school guidance, including guidance related to personal protective equipment use and SARS-CoV-2 testing. However, fully vaccinated persons who have close contact with someone with COVID-19 do NOT need to quarantine if they meet all of the following criteria:
1.) Are fully vaccinated (i.e., ≥2 weeks following receipt of the second dose in a 2-dose series, or ≥2 weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine), AND
2.) Are within 3 months following receipt of the last dose in the series, AND
3.) Have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure.
Persons who do not meet all 3 of the above criteria should continue to follow current quarantine guidance after exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19. Fully vaccinated persons who do not quarantine during the 3 month period described in 2. B. above, should still watch for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days following an exposure. If they experience symptoms, they should be clinically evaluated for COVID-19, including SARS-CoV-2 testing, if indicated.
Effective as of October 22, 2020, the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) updated their criteria for what is now considered a “Close Contact” in regards to someone’s exposure to a COVID-19 positive individual. This definition has now been changed by the NJDOH to read – “a total of 15 minutes or more of close contact exposure (6 feet or closer) to an infected person during a 24-hour period”. Those who have been determined to be a close contact to a COVID -19 positive individual must quarantine for a period of not less than 14 days.
The NJ Department of Health (NJDOH) has provided additional contact tracers to our local Health Department from the State work force. They support the operation while under the direction of the Pequannock Health Department’s nurse supervisors. The Department has recently received additional contact tracers to assist in our jurisdiction.
The Pequannock Health Department is working closely with these institutions to contact trace, investigate, isolate, and quarantine individuals to quickly contain any spread of the COVID-19 virus that may be identified within these institutions. In many cases, when COVID cases have increased, classes or schools have suspended in-person instruction for 14 day quarantine periods, when spread within the school population exceeds CDC and NJDOH guidelines. Updated K thru 12 guidance may be found at https://www.state.nj.us/health/cd/topics/covid2019_schools.shtml
It cannot be overstated that large, crowded gatherings, especially indoor or in closed tents, where social distancing isn't being practiced and where face masks aren't being worn when necessary, are in part contributing to the spread of COVID-19. This is especially true at parties or large events where eating and drinking precludes the use of masks. At certain events, music may also be playing loudly, which causes people to get close and project so they can be heard in conversation. Indoor spaces are not as well ventilated as the outdoors, and these indoor spaces may make it difficult to socially distance properly. Smaller social interactions, especially indoors, while not practicing safety precautions, may also present a higher risk of transmission.
It is advised that indoor gatherings be limited in a manner that conforms with current NJDOH/CDC guidelines.
As of Friday, April 2nd, New Jersey’s general outdoor gathering limit increased from 50 people to 200 people. Outdoor gatherings that are religious services or ceremonies, political events, weddings, funerals, or memorial services continue to not have any limit. In addition, venues with a seating capacity of 2,500 or more are permitted to host events at 20 percent capacity indoors and 30 percent capacity outdoors.
The number of individuals at indoor gatherings that are not religious services or celebrations, political activities, wedding ceremonies, funerals, or memorial services shall be limited to 25 persons. See Executive Order 230 for more details.
The public must continue to be diligent about the following, while enjoying activities:
New Jersey continues to strongly discourage all non-essential interstate travel at this time.
Unvaccinated travelers and residents returning from any U.S. state or territory beyond the immediate region (New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Delaware) should self-quarantine at their home, hotel, or other temporary lodging following recommendations from the CDC:
You no longer need to quarantine or get tested before/after domestic travel if you are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 in the past three months, provided that:
Information on NJDOH Travel Advisory
Please note, Executive Orders may be issued by the Governor at any time to establish or relax restrictions on certain businesses, social activities and gatherings. For up to date and more detailed information, please refer to the entire contents of the Executive Orders and Executive Directives listed at the links below.
Please seethe link for all Executive Orders to date:
Please see the link for an up to date list of Executive Directives that the Health Department is responsible to enforce