Contact: Kelly Vence
Public Information Officer
ELIZABETH, NJ- July 1, 2016 – On July 7, 2016, Mayor J. Christian Bollwage will join the Department of Health and Human Services in conjunction with Trinitas Regional Medical Center at a panel discussion regarding the Zika Virus.
“Knowledge is the key to prevention and protection against the Zika virus. The City of Elizabeth is committed to providing access to the information and resources that will assist in maintaining good health and overall well-being,” said Mayor J. Christian Bollwage. “From dedicated health care professionals to municipal leaders, this panel will share their expertise and experience as well as discuss precautions that can be taken to limit exposure to the virus. Working together with Trinitas Regional Medical Center, services will be enhanced and proactive measures taken to safeguard the community.”
The forum titled “A Community Responds,” will be held at the Trinitas Center of Regional Education (CORE) building, located at 1160-1164 Elizabeth Avenue from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. It will be hosted by Mayor Bollwage, as well as a team of panelists including: Dr. William Farrer, Infection Control Expert; Dr. Munir Nazir, Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist; Lourdes Hernandez, Director of Infection Control at Trinitas and Mark Colicchio, Public Health Officer for the City of Elizabeth.
Zika virus disease is spread by the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. In addition, these mosquitoes also spread dengue and chikungunya viruses. Primarily, this species of mosquito bites during the day and is typically found in the following: artificial or natural water, containers, including but not limited to: flower pots, buckets, plates under potted plants, water bowls for pets and bird baths. The most common symptoms are fever, rash, red eyes, joint or muscle pain and headache. Indications usually begin 2 to 7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito and can last several days to a week. At this time, there is no vaccine or medicine to treat Zika.
“The spread of the Zika virus could eventually present a true health challenge to the Elizabeth area community,” explained Gary S. Horan, FACHE, President & CEO of Trinitas. “We urge everyone to attend this program in order to be prepared with the most up to date information.”
New Jersey had its first case of Zika in early June, when a baby was delivered with birth defects caused by the virus. The child's 31-year-old mother was exposed to the virus in her native Honduras. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has urged pregnant women to avoid traveling to more than a dozen countries in South and Central America, along with the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico, where the virus is prevalent.
“Working with the Mayor, State and local healthcare professionals, this upcoming panel discussion will act as a catalyst in driving communication between its partners to our residents and community,” said Krishna Garlic, Director of Health and Human Services. “The Zika epidemic is a public issue that we will need to continue to monitor, research and respond to, in order to make sure our residents stay educated and informed on this subject.”
To register for this event, please call Andera Topping with the City of Elizabeth at 908-820-4050. For more information about the Zika Virus, please visit