On Jan. 26, Mayor Nicholas Sacco updated North Bergen on the status of the COVID-19 pandemic and the progress of the vaccine rollout.
“COVID-19 is still very active amongst our community,” Sacco said. “In the last week we have had more than 500 cases and eight deaths.”
As of Jan. 25, there were 9,005 total confirmed cases and 268 deaths. A week prior, on Jan. 18, there were 8,594 total confirmed cases.
“Fortunately we are offering free testing to all North Bergen residents regardless of insurance status at our testing sites,” Sacco continued. He was at the Braddock Park testing site on Jan. 26.
The site, opened in partnership with FASTMED of NJ, is the township’s most active testing site, offering walk-in and drive-thru tests with no appointment necessary.
The site is open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from 12 to 6 p.m., offering COVID-19 nasal swabs and antibody testing. Sacco strongly encouraged all residents to get tested, in addition to maintaining social distancing and wearing face masks.
Since Thanksgiving, the township has tested 15,000 residents and is regularly testing municipal employees as they constantly interact with the public.
Two other free testing sites are available by appointment-only with proof of residency. Call the Walk-in Urgent Care Center, 7405 Bergenline Ave., at (201) 636-6763; call Diligent Medical Care, 3725 Liberty Ave., at (201) 834-8887; or text COVID to (973) 447-3559.
North Bergen provides free masks to residents. Call 201-392-2157 or email NBCares@northbergen.org.
As the state continues to expand its vaccination program, Sacco urged all residents to register for an appointment using the state portal at www.covidvaccine.nj.gov. Problems have been reported with the portal, so patience is urged.
Vaccines are currently restricted to medical professionals, first responders, seniors over the age of 65, and those between ages 16 and 64 with medical conditions. North Bergen has established a vaccine distribution location and has been providing vaccines to healthcare professionals and others as allowed by the state.
The first doses of the Moderna vaccine were distributed to frontline healthcare workers in the municipal chambers on Dec. 24. The week prior, Hackensack Meridian Health Palisades Medical Center began administering the first doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to hospital personnel.
North Bergen has received a very limited number of vaccines. It expects to expand access to the North Bergen Vaccination Site to other eligible residents in the near future depending on state guidance and available vaccine supply.
Sacco urged residents to check the North Bergen website and social media regularly for updates. The township will continue to provide information as soon as it is available.
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