Monmouth County Health Department Newsletter: September/October 2021

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Monmouth County Health Department Newsletter

September/October 2021

September/October 2021 Newsletter

The Monmouth County Health Department strives to provide up-to-date information in our newsletter and as well as our website.  We encourage you to check our website often for the latest information, including COVID-19 clinics and vaccine availability.

COVID-19 Delta Variant

COVID-19 Variant

The Delta variant is considered a variant of concern—increasing from less than 1% of cases in May 2021 to over 80% of cases in July 2021.  In New Jersey, the average daily number of new Delta cases has steadily increased from approximately 200 to approximately 1,000 through July 2021.  Source: NJ Department of Health


The Delta variant spreads about twice as easily from person to person than previous strains. Additionally, people infected with the variant have higher viral loads—meaning more virus in their body—than with previous variants.


The best way to protect yourself from the virus is to get a COVID-19 vaccine. While we are seeing case numbers similar to Summer 2020, there are over 70% fewer deaths due to the impact of vaccines. Getting vaccinated makes you:

  • 5x less likely to get infected with COVID-19
  • 8x less likely to get ill from COVID-19
  • 25x less likely to be hospitalized or die from COVID-19

At this time, the Monmouth County is administering the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine, which is approved for adults ages 18 and older at our Brookdale Community College vaccination site. No one under 18 can be given the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine.


The County is also administering the Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine, which is approved for children ages 12 to 18 at our Brookdale Community College vaccination site. Anyone under 18 MUST be accompanied by a parent or guardian.


For more information regarding the State’s COVID-19 Vaccination approach, go to


At this time, people who are immunocompromised who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines should receive an additional dose after the initial two doses. This additional dose is intended to make sure that immunocompromised individuals have enough protection against COVID-19 as they may not build the same level of immunity from the two-dose vaccine series.


The additional Pfizer or Moderna dose should be of the same product as the initial vaccine series. However, if the vaccine administered previously is not available, the other mRNA COVID-19 vaccine product may be administered.  Please consult with your primary care physician for the best course of action for you to take.


At this time additional doses are not recommended for anybody who is not immunocompromised. Separately, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has announced a plan for COVID-19 booster shots for fully vaccinated individuals, pending FDA approval and a recommendation from the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. A booster dose is a supplemental dose of vaccine given to people when the immune response weakens over time. The NJ Department of Health is preparing for booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine for the general public and additional details will be shared as they become available.

Return to School

Students at School Masked

The State of NJ will require all students, educators, staff, and visitors to wear face masks indoors for the start of the 2021-2022 school year. Effective Monday, August 9, 2021, masks are required in the indoor premises of all public, private, and parochial preschool, elementary, and secondary school buildings, with limited exceptions, outlined HERE.


Parents/caregivers are strongly encouraged to monitor their children for signs of illness every day as they are the frontline for assessing illness in their children. Students who are sick should not attend school.


Additional information on schools, including safety information is available HERE and also from the CDC.


Mask use has been shown to slow the spread of COVID-19 and other person-to person pathogens such as seasonal flu and is still strongly encouraged.  Find more information on the difference between COVID -19 and seasonal flu HERE.



Childhood Immunization Services (18 and Under)

Routine Childhood immunizations are provided free to children from birth to 18 years old who have no insurance or are uninsured, living in Monmouth County Health Department Member Towns. With parental permission, the child/children will be entered into a statewide immunization registry, which encourages timely and age-appropriate immunizations. 


IMPORTANT NOTE:  The clinic is run by APPOINTMENT only. It is open every Thursday starting June 10, 2021, except holidays from 9-11:30 a.m. and 1-3:30 p.m. The appointment can be made by calling 732-431-7456 and follow the prompts.

Breast Cancer Awareness


October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which is an annual campaign to increase awareness of the disease.  Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among American women. Mammograms are the best way to detect breast cancer early. Contact your primary care physician to learn more.


How Can I Lower My Risk?  Some main factors that influence your risk for breast cancer include:

  • Being a woman.
  • Being older (most breast cancers are found in women who are 50 years old or older).
  • Having changes in your BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes.

Most women who get breast cancer have no known risk factors and no history of the disease in their families. There are things you can do to can help lower your breast cancer risk.


Although breast cancer screening cannot prevent breast cancer, it can help find breast cancer early, when it is most treatable. Talk to your doctor about a breast cancer screening.

The Spotted Lanterfly

Spotted Lanterfly

The Spotted Lanternfly (SLF) is an invasive planthopper native to China, India, and Vietnam. SLF is a serious invasive pest with a healthy appetite for our plants and it can be a significant nuisance, affecting the quality of life and enjoyment of the outdoors. If you see a Spotted Lanternfly, help us Stomp it Out!


To report a sighting, use the reporting tool or call 833-4BADBUG (833-422-3284). For other questions, email the NJ Dept of Agriculture HERE.

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Did you know?

The MCHD sampled 47 ocean water bathing sites over 30 miles of coastline weekly during the 2021 summer season.  For additional information, as well as sampling results, visit

Board of County Commissioners

Thomas A. Arnone, Director
Susan M. Kiley, Deputy Director

Lillian G. Burry

Nick DiRocco

Ross F. Licitra

Board of Health Members

Brian Charnick, Acting President 
Ellynn Kahle
Ross F. Licitra
Andrew Wardell


Commissioner Deputy Director
Susan M. Kiley, Liaison 

Christopher P. Merkel M.P.H., H.O.

Public Health Coordinator

Board of Health Meetings

Board of Health Meetings are held virtually. Go to for more information.


Monmouth County Seal 2018