Update on coronavirus case in East Brunswick: woman was not living in town when diagnosed


EAST BRUNSWICK – The woman who tested positive for COVID-19 was not living in East Brunswick with her family at the time of diagnosis, as previously reported.

The Middlesex County Health Department released updated information on March 13 pertaining to an incident revealed on March 11. The woman had not seen her family since Valentine’s Day, according to a statement provided by the office of East Brunswick Mayor Brad Cohen.

“Since this is well beyond the incubation period, the resident’s family will not be tested and they are not considered to be a risk to the public,” the statement reads.

Despite letters from residents and postings on social media, names, addresses and any personal identifying information on any resident or patient will not be released and shared with the community, the mayor said, as “any such action would be a breach of their privacy rights and serves no public purpose.”

Because of a suspected 21-day incubation period and the fact that there are residents with the infection who are not self-quarantining, public schools will be closed for the next week at a minimum, according to the statement. Computers have been provided to all students who are in need so that learning can continue remotely. The township is working with the public schools to make sure that anyone who qualifies for free and reduced food gets their meals at convenient pickup locations throughout the township, according to the statement.

Township municipal offices will be open to the public only on Tuesdays and Thursdays for the immediate future. The municipal offices will be open every day during regular hours. There will only be one entrance for the public on the police side since it has a ramp for those with disabilities. Telephone or email contact are preferred. Anyone who needs to make a payment to the Revenue Department can do so online or leave payments in the drop box outside the Municipal Office Building.

Municipal Courts will be closed for the next two weeks. Any cases scheduled during that time will be rescheduled. Staff will still be present daily and will follow the township schedule in that they will be open to the public on Tuesdays and Thursdays only.

All essential and emergency services will be available without restriction.

“I cannot predict the timeframe for this crisis. Epidemiological data out of China and South Korea would lead us to believe that this can go on for a lot longer than we have anticipated. This can have a drastic impact on the census and elections. Please take time to visit the Middlesex County website and consider filling out your census forms and registering for mail-in ballots. The Census Count is expected to begin by the end of the month and primary elections are in June,” Cohen said in the statement.

For those who have signs and symptoms of COVID-19, contact your healthcare provider before going to the office or hospital.

“This health crisis is having a tremendous impact on East Brunswick businesses. Some food businesses have responded by offering takeout through pickup locations as they have been forced to close their restaurants. I hope that others will join in this option as we do not want businesses to close. In addition, please consider purchasing gift certificates to our neighborhood stores as this will help them make payroll and stay afloat while the public stays at home,” Cohen said in the statement.

For more information, contact Cohen at 732-390-6810 or mayor@eastbrunswick.org