N.J. Department of Health, Hospital Association Reassure Public on Hospital Safety

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(Camden, NJ) – The New Jersey Department of Health and the New Jersey Hospital Association (NJHA) have produced a joint Public Service Announcement (PSA) targeting residents who may suffer a potential heart attack or stroke and might be reluctant to go to hospital Emergency Departments due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The PSA, which features Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli and NJHA President and CEO Cathy Bennett, was made following reports that residents may be delaying needed health care that they require because of concerns of hospital safety and capacity amid coronavirus.

Hospitals report anecdotally that inpatient admissions are down anywhere from 20 to 40 percent compared with pre-COVID activity.

“The Freeholder Board is in constant contact with the health care networks and hospitals in our region. We have not yet beaten coronavirus, but we have thus far avoided the worst-case scenario where hospitals are pushed beyond their capacity,” said Freeholder Carmen Rodriguez. “If you or a loved one needs immediate care, there is no reason to be afraid to visit our region’s premiere health care institutions.”

The PSA, will be promoted through a robust social media campaign and is also available on YouTube at: https://youtu.be/aUDfZnI1WG4.

Heart attack and stroke risks can vary by age, gender and heredity including race. Shared risk factors for heart attack and stroke can include high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, smoking, high cholesterol, physical inactivity and heart disease.

Residents are reminded that signs of a stroke can include:


  • Face drooping
  • Arm weakness or numbness
  • Slurred speech or difficulty speaking
  • Sudden confusion and trouble seeing


Signs of a heart attack can include:

  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Pain or discomfort in arms, back, neck, jaw or stomach
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea or lightheadedness


For more warning signs, visit nj.gov/health/fhs/chronic/heart-disease-stroke/