The Cape May County Freeholder Board has announced several initiatives to address issues related to the coronavirus.
These include restricting visitation at the Crest Haven Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and a travel ban outside of the county for all workers on official duty.
As of 8 a.m. on Tuesday, March 10, there have been no visits from family or the public to Crest Haven Nursing and Rehabilitation Center.
Staff from the center are in the process of reaching out to family to let them know about the change, and signs have been posted outside of the facility.
Residents have been informed of the policy as well. The only exceptions will be medical emergencies, deliveries and outside medical support.
The Information and Technology Department from the county government has arranged for computers to be available to the residents to Skype or use Facebook with their families.
“We have the ultimate duty to ensure our residents at Crest Haven are safe,” said Freeholder Jeffrey Pierson, liaison to Crest Haven Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. “I communicated with our director at the center, Jennifer Hess, upon consultation with Freeholder Director Gerald Thornton, and we all agreed this is the right decision. The individuals in the center are at high risk and their safety is paramount.”
The Freeholder Board on Tuesday night also agreed on a temporary travel ban for all employees doing official county business that is non-essential outside of the county borders. This includes meetings and conferences.
“As we monitor the situation, we believe this is the best course of action to keep our employees and county residents healthy,” said Thornton. “Our employees perform essential functions throughout the county, and we have to do everything we can to ensure they are ready to serve and help those in our community.”
Thornton also wants county residents to know that the Cape May County Office of Emergency Management has been involved in discussions both with the state and locally to ensure they are prepared for any COVID-19 (coronavirus) developments.
A county task force was organized by Health Department Director Kevin Thomas and will continue to meet to discuss COVID-19 related issues, documents, testing, coordinating, cooperation and communications.
Thomas also met with the county school superintendents to discuss safety plans, social distances, recommendations on canceling field trips and large gatherings and public health issues for COVID-19.