The committees received testimony regarding state preparedness for the H1N1 Influenza from: Commissioner Heather Howard, NJ Department of Health and Senior Services Commissioner Lucille Davy, NJ Department of Education Director Richard Canas, NJ Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness Lieutenant Col. Jerome Hatfield, Deputy Superintendent of Homeland Security, NJ State Police Ernesto Butcher, Chief Operating Officer, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported 226 confirmed cases of Swine Flu in the United States as of Monday morning. Thirty states are affected and in New Jersey, there are seven confirmed cases of Swine Flu. According to the NJ Department of Health and Senior Services, all the New Jersey cases are in scattered regions throughout the state – meaning there is not a single non-family cluster.
This hearing could not have happened at a better time as a school in Hainesport Township closed due to two children with flu-like symptoms, raising the concern of possible Swine Flu infection. The testimony received during the hearing reassured the public that they are receiving the most up-to-date information and New Jerseans should feel confident that public places across the state are implementing precautionary measures to better protect the safety of all. The state representatives who testified detailed the measures being used to stop the spread of this flu and New Jersey is prepared to deal with this public health situation. The state has been recognized nationally as a leader in preparedness and has plans in place to address public health emergencies.