This is an extremely trying time for residents of the North Fork, Suffolk County and the entire country, but I want to assure you, the coronavirus outbreak has been, and will continue to be the top priority of Suffolk County officials until the outbreak subsides. I hope the information I can provide in this update will help clarify the state of affairs as they stand at this time, and help alleviate tensions and anxieties.
At least once a day, my colleagues and I have been in close communication, with the County Executive’s office, the Suffolk County Department of Health Services (SCDHS), and the Suffolk County Office of Emergency Management (OEM), who in turn are in close communication with their counterparts in State government. The county has been updating Suffolk County Towns and Villages daily, and participating in conference calls with the Federal government to secure Federal help if need be.
OEM and SCDHS have been coordinating with and disseminating information to hospitals, nursing homes, school districts as well as local first responders. It is imperative that our first responders remain healthy, and the appropriate protective equipment is available for them, as well as training for its appropriate use.
According to the Dr. Gregson Pigott, Commissioner of SCDHS, when there is a confirmed case of COVID-19, the county has the authority, and will initiate an investigation to identify the people the person was in close contact with, starting with family/household members, close friends and co-workers. Depending on a number of factors, including the time frame of the exposure, people may be required to be quarantined.
We have been advised by SCDHS that if you are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, which includes a fever of 100.4 degrees or higher, a cough, or shortness of breath, you should contact your doctor before going to their office, walk-in clinic or emergency room. Due to the availability of diagnostic testing kits, currently tests will only be performed on those individuals who are displaying symptoms. The availability of testing kits is out of the hands of Suffolk County, but I am in contact with State and Federal officials encouraging them to dedicate whatever resources are needed to get an adequate number of testing kits to Suffolk County as soon as possible.
The Office of Legislator Al Krupski Suffolk County Legislator 1st District
I’ve had conversations with, and listened to the concerns of local businesses and confirmed with Dr.
Pigott, that COVID-19 is not a food-borne virus.
First and foremost, please don’t forget the very basics in preventing the spread of this disease: use good
hand washing techniques, and use hand sanitizer when available and when hand washing is not possible.
Please try to avoid large gatherings, and employ social distancing and other transmission mitigation
strategies. If you suspect you have been exposed, and you have a family member or friend who may be
at risk for the worst effects of the virus if contracted, consider limiting your contact with them.
Suffolk County’s Call 311 had the latest updated information on COVID-19, but you can also visit the
SC Portal at https://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/pager/4932/page/311 .
The Suffolk County Legislature has cancelled non-essential meetings, but will continue to hold
Committee and General Meetings. However, we encourage to people to stay home and to submit
comments on any pending legislation or any other topic in an email or writing to:
Clerk of the Legislature
Suffolk County Legislature
William J. Lindsay County Complex
William H. Rogers Building
725 Veterans Memorial Highway
Smithtown, NY 11787
We are all in this together. I believe if we keep calm and work together, we will get through this trying time.
Finally, I want to thank the County Executive, Suffolk County Department heads, County staff, first responders, and medical professionals who are on the front lines of this crisis. They are members of the community and I am confident they will do their best to keep our County safe. I also want to thank all organizations who have stepped up and provided support, and I ask you find out who those local organizations are and consider supporting their efforts.