COVID-19 Positive Case Reported in NJ Health Department, Commissioner Goes Into Quarantine

TRENTON, NJ – She needs no introduction.  New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichili is the person who guides New Jersey’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and each morning she appears with Governor Phil Murphy to lecture New Jerseyans about the importance of wearing a face mask, social distancing, washing your hands and not having large gatherings at your home.   Surely, behind the iron curtain of COVID-19 protection and best practice, the New Jersey Department of Health and its employees live behind an impenetrable wall of proper hygiene and social distancing that would prevent a COVID-19 outbreak among its own ranks.

Well, no. Today, the New Jersey Department of Health issued a press release saying Murphy’s defensive coordinator has been removed from the field.

“An employee working in the Commissioner’s Office recently tested positive for COVID-19. The employee was last in the building on Tuesday, November 24, and is currently isolating at home,
the Health Department said four days later. “Out of an abundance of caution and in line with the Department’s guidance, Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli and some members of the staff who work in the Office of the Commissioner at the Department of Health in Trenton will work from home and voluntarily quarantine through December 8. We have begun the contact tracing process to notify everyone who may have come into contact with our colleague during the potential infection window and will offer testing to close contacts. The Office of the Commissioner was closed and cleaned today according to CDC guidelines.”

Persichili will not need an introduction at the next morning COVID-19 briefing, because she will not be participating in in-person press conferences during her quarantine period and will resume in-person public appearances according to CDC guidance.

As fellow Democrat New York Governor said last week, if you catch COVID-19, it’s your own fault.

“Just to make it very simple. If you socially distanced, and you wore a mask and you were smart, none of this would be a problem,” Cuomo said last week. “It’s all self-imposed…if you didn’t eat the cheesecake, you wouldn’t have a weight problem.”