During the past several days there has been considerable discussion about our region possibly nearing an apex of new COVID-19 infections. Regardless of when this point will come, it is essential that we continue to follow guidelines to prevent the spread.
To keep residents informed on the spread of COVID-19 within our communities, Suffolk County has launched a public mapping interface. To view the latest number of positive cases in Suffolk County along with township and hamlet specific data, please visit:
Information is developed from data provided by the New York State Department of Health.
Violations of NY PAUSE and the social distancing guidelines may be reported by calling (631) 852-COPS or 3-1-1.
The CDC has recently updated its guidance on the use of masks by the general public. The CDC now recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others. Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.
To read the full guidance, visit: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html
In the following short video, Surgeon General, Dr. Jerome Adams, shares ways to create your own face covering in a few easy steps.
United Way of Long Island’s UNITED TOGETHER: A Response Fund For COVID-19 will be used to help Long Island families as the current health and economic crisis progresses. If you are a low-wage worker and have had a recent sudden loss of employment or furlough due to the effects of COVID-19, assistance will be available for eligible applicants. Beginning on or around April 6th support will be provided until these funds are exhausted.
Low-income, wage earners who reside in Suffolk or Nassau County and are recently unemployed or have been furloughed due to the effects of COVID-19 may apply for assistance. Applicants must meet the monthly eligibility guidelines.
UNITED TOGETHER: A Response Fund For COVID-19 will help eligible applicants meet their critical basic needs of food and household supplies via retail gift cards.
Applicants looking to request assistance from UNITED TOGETHER: A Response Fund For COVID-19, may do so through United Way of Long Island’s website beginning early April. https://www.unitedwayli.org/covid19helpsuffolk
Until Cornell Cooperative Extension of Suffolk County is able to resume its in-person, interactive parent education programs, the educators of Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Family Health and Wellness program encourage you to check its website from where its blogs and podcasts (entitled Parenting Tips) are posted. They deal with a variety of important family concerns. Discover lots of helpful information on our Human Development and Parenting links. During this most challenging time, we hope you can find some valuable, research-based parenting strategies.
Stony Brook University Department of Family, Population and Preventative Medicine’s Dietetic Internship Program students Brianna Kobylar and Siobhan Walsh, MS have put together helpful tips for adjusting to life during this difficult time.
With the current COVID-19 pandemic, people all around the country are learning to adapt to social distancing and self-quarantining as people are confined to their homes for the time being. This is a big adjustment for most who can no longer leave their home for work, school, sports, or social events. Feeling stuck inside can easily lead to restlessness and can be mentally draining. Brianna Kobylar has put together the following list of "Tips and Tricks to Make the Best of Your Time at Home":
Spending all day at home can undoubtedly make people feel a bit trapped or unproductive, but with some mindful effort, you can make the best of this time at home. Come up with a few simple rules to follow on the daily and enjoy this time while keeping healthy!
Food shopping has suddenly become a daunting errand during the COVID-19 pandemic as people wander through aisles looking for needed grocery items while attempting to keep 6 feet away from other customers. However, the trip to the supermarket can be less stressful if you prepare in advance. Making a grocery list, purchasing shelf-stable foods, and focusing on buying in bulk can increase grocery shopping efficiency, save money, minimize food waste, and decrease the need to grocery shop in the near future. Siobhan Walsh, MS explains further in these "Tips for a safe supermarket sweep":
Before venturing to the supermarket, start by making a list of foods you need to purchase. This will help you stay focused when buying groceries and prevent impromptu purchases. Additionally, consider arranging the items on your list by the layout of the grocery store. For instance, if your local market has the sections bread and dairy next to each other, you can save yourself time by writing the items on your list one right after the other. This will make your grocery shopping trip more efficient.
What to look for in shelf stable foods
When deciding what food to add to your grocery list, consider the shelf stability of the food. By buying foods with a longer shelf life, you will not need to worry about food expiring so quickly.
While it is encouraged to buy fresh fruits and vegetables, your supermarket may not have available the produce on your grocery list. In that case, look for:
Dried beans are a great option to buy in bulk as they are typically inexpensive, high in protein and have a long shelf life. Dried beans can be stored in your pantry for one to two years and can easily be incorporated into meals. Dried beans are usually soaked before being cooked. If you are unfamiliar cooking dried beans, here is a New York Times article explaining how to prepare them.
Buying shelf stable dairy and nondairy milk (such as almond milk or soymilk) is another trick to decrease your trips to the grocery store. These milk products are safe to leave in your pantry for months at a time and taste the same as their refrigerated counterparts. However, be advised, after opening, refrigeration is required.
Even though foods may have an extended shelf life, be mindful when buying food in bulk. In the long run, buying in bulk may be more expensive and can lead to food waste, if you are not using your supply. To prevent wasting money and food, look at expiration dates on packages. Store food by following the First In/First Out (FIFO) rule, indicating that the food is stored in the pantry by earliest to latest expiration date.
Residents who have questions related to the COVID-19 should continue to visit the county website, www.SuffolkCountyNY.gov or call Suffolk 3-1-1, or 631-853-6311 if outside the county, where you will be directly connected to a live operator who can direct your call to the appropriate place.