COVID-19 and Montclair: What we know

This page will serve as a hub to direct Montclair Local readers to our most recent news coverage of the COVID-19 situation, as well as to offer links to statewide and national resources for the latest information. It will be updated as news develops.

The New York/New Jersey area is dealing with an ongoing outbreak of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, with more than 131,000 cases and 8,500 deaths confirmed in New Jersey — including 382 cases in Montclair, resulting in 44 deaths — as of Wednesday afternoon, May 6.

Montclair’s municipal buildings, schools, public library, and parks and recreation facilities have all closed. Statewide regulations have indefinitely closed bars and restaurants, gyms, movie theaters, and all other non-essential businesses, while residents are asked not to travel between the hours of 8 p.m. and 5 a.m. No gatherings are permitted anywhere in the state.

A full day-by-day timeline of Montclair Local’s coverage since the pandemic began is available here. Below is all of Montclair Local’s coverage posted in the last week:

The week that was

Wednesday, May 6: 131,890 cases statewide, 382 cases in Montclair; 8,552 deaths statewide, 44 deaths in Montclair

Tuesday, May 5: 130,593 cases statewide, 381 cases in Montclair; 8,244 deaths statewide, 44 deaths in Montclair

Monday, May 4: 128,269 cases statewide, 381 cases in Montclair; 7,910 deaths statewide, 44 deaths in Montclair

Sunday, May 3: 126,744 cases statewide, 374 cases in Montclair; 7,871 deaths statewide, 44 deaths in Montclair

Saturday, May 2: 123,717 cases statewide, 371 cases in Montclair; 7,742 deaths statewide, 44 deaths in Montclair

Friday, May 1: 121,190 cases statewide, 365 cases in Montclair; 7,538 deaths statewide, 43 deaths in Montclair

Thursday, April 30: 118,652 cases statewide, 356 cases in Montclair; 7,228 deaths statewide, 41 deaths in Montclair

 

 

What is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is a contagious respiratory illness with symptoms including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Those symptoms can develop within 2-14 days of exposure to the virus, which can occur as a result of close contact (within about six feet) with an infected person, or by coming into contact with contaminated surfaces. The World Health Organization has declared a pandemic, with cases surfacing in more than 100 countries worldwide.

While it is believed that most individuals who contract COVID-19 will deal with mild symptoms, limiting the spread of the virus is essential, authorities say, both to protect individuals at higher-risk of serious illness after contracting COVID-19 — including older adults, or people with serious chronic medical conditions including heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease — as well as to prevent local medical facilities from being overwhelmed. (This strategy is known as “flattening the curve.”)

To that end, officials are urging people — whether healthy or sick — to follow the principle of “social distancing,” avoiding unnecessary travel and limiting in-person interactions in groups of any size. Individuals feeling symptoms should self-quarantine, minimizing all activities except for seeking medical care.

Information and best practices from the CDC

According to the CDC, the best way to avoid contracting COVID-19 is to limit exposure, either to people in close contact or surfaces that may have been contaminated. The CDC offers these tips to protect yourself:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after being in a public place, or blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Put distance between yourself and other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people at higher risk of serious illness as a result of the virus.
  • Stay home if you are sick, except to seek medical treatment. Wear a face mask if you are sick. (You do not need to wear a face mask if you are not sick, unless you are caring for someone who is sick.)
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash immediately, and wash your hands afterward.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets and sinks.

And below are links to the CDC website offering guidelines for the most helpful behaviors to follow while COVID-19 is actively spreading:

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