Irvington Township mayor Tony Vauss and Carmelo Garcia, Director of the Irvington Housing Authority, partnered with Salerno Medical Associates of Orange, New Jersey to provide COVID-19 testing to Housing Authority residents this past weekend.
Garcia hired an outside company to conduct a thorough cleaning and sanitizing of each building three times per day. In addition, he dispatched a specialized unit of law enforcement officers to ensure social distancing measures are being followed.
According To Mayor Vauss: “Our goal is to identify those who are asymptomatic carriers of the virus and to isolate them from the rest of the population until they are negative. This testing must be done in large groups that represent various segments of our population in order to be effective.”
“Testing is the only way to simultaneously protect high-risk residents, curtail the spread of COVID-19, and begin discussions surrounding reopening the Township.”
While details and timing have yet to be made public, Gov. Phil Murphy and Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli announced plans to provide widespread COVID-19 testing — including for those with or without symptoms — including state-run facilities, long-term care centers, and via mobile clinics dispatched to urban centers.
Testing is now available at more than 100 public and private sites but has largely been limited to those showing signs of viral infection. In announcing the goals of his six-point recovery plan last week, Murphy said the state must double the daily testing capacity — a process he said would take until late May — before New Jersey can safely reopen businesses and public spaces.
The governor announced that the Trump administration had provided New Jersey with 550,000 additional diagnostic tests and 750,000 swabs to help advance its reopening strategy. The state will also deploy a saliva-based test developed with Rutgers University, which academic leaders have said could be scaled up within weeks to screen at least 20,000 people daily.
DOH has created a task force with leaders at Federally Qualified Health Centers and agricultural officials to develop a strategy for testing the 12,000 to 15,000 migrant workers that play a key role in the state’s farming sector.
Editor’s Note: Here’s hoping that the Trump administration’s generosity after resisting nationwide testing, and the positive Covid statuses of a presidential aide, two vice presidential aides, a presidential advisor’s aide, and 34 members of the Secret Service, plus the quarantining of three health officials (including Dr. Anthony Fauci) is merely coincidental.