Advisory: Update from Mayor Bhalla on COVID-19 (8/28), sign-up for testing Monday and Tuesday

Impact of COVID-19 in Hoboken

The Hoboken Health Department reported the following new COVID-19 cases:

August 24: 0
August 25: 1
August 26: 1
August 27: 1
August 28: 0

Hoboken now has a total of 698 known, confirmed cases since the beginning of the pandemic, with the number of fatalities (31) remaining unchanged. 660 residents have been identified by the health department as fully recovered from the virus. Of the four new cases since last Friday, two are under the age of 16, and two are between the ages of 51 and 75.

COVID-19 testing continuing through Prompt MD and Riverside Medical

Prompt MD is once again providing COVID-19 testing for Hoboken residents at our pop-up site at 605 Jackson Street this upcoming Monday and Tuesday from 8 am until 3 pm, on a first-come first-serve basis. Appointments are still available through the online sign-up at

Riverside is also continuing their COVID-19 testing under the 14th Street Viaduct for Hoboken residents and Hoboken business employees, who should call the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) at 201-420-5621 Monday through Friday, 9 am until 1 pm, which will then forward your information to Riverside. When Riverside then calls back for scheduled time, I ask that residents please provide them with health insurance information at the time of the call.

If a resident does not have insurance and receives a test at either the pop-up site at 605 Jackson Street or through Riverside Medical under the 14th Street Viaduct, the City will pay for the cost of the test.

Rapid tests unfortunately continue to be in short supply at the Riverside testing site and across the country. Test results should be available within three days of taking the test at either the Riverside or the Prompt MD sites.

Hoboken to continue testing asymptomatic residents

Hoboken’s policies for testing residents for COVID-19 remain unchanged from previous months. If you believe that you’ve been exposed to someone with COVID-19, the Hoboken Health Department continues to urge you to get a test – regardless of whether or not you have symptoms. The threat of asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 continues to be very real, and a number of residents have tested positive over the past several months for the virus despite not having any symptoms and feeling healthy.

If you think you’ve been in a compromising situation or were in touch with someone who recently tested positive, please wait and self-quarantine for at least 5-7 days after the potential exposure and before getting a test to reduce the chance of an inaccurate result.

Senior parking permits extended

To help limit additional trips to City Hall, the Hoboken Parking Utility is automatically renewing senior parking permits until June 30, 2021. No action is needed from seniors to renew the permits.

Gyms re-opening on September 1

On Thursday, Governor Murphy announced that gyms and health clubs can re-open indoors with specific guidelines as of Tuesday, September 1. Gyms must adhere to the following guidelines, as required by the State:

  • 25% capacity
  • All members and staff must wear face masks at all times
  • Group fitness classes limited to 1 person per 200 feet
  • Logs for members and staff
  • Six feet of distance between equipment
  • Regular sanitizing of equipment

I recognize that despite the ability to re-open, gym owners still face substantial challenges. As a result, we are extending our local Executive Order to continue to allow gyms and fitness clubs to hold socially distanced workouts in outdoor spaces and fields. If possible, I encourage gyms to continue offering these outdoor workouts, given the advantage of additional room for social distancing and the safer outdoor atmosphere.

Face masks at all indoor recreation facilities

Governor Murphy previously re-opened indoor recreation studios, which includes activities such as rock climbing, karate, dance, gymnastics, yoga, pilates, and more. My office has received additional clarification from Governor Murphy’s staff that face masks are in fact required, according to the State’s Executive Order 157, at all times in these recreation studios unless a specific medical condition exists that would jeopardize a customer’s health. The Governor’s office added the clarification that individuals temporarily removing face masks off to the side for a moment after engaging in strenuous activity or to drink water is permitted, but must otherwise be worn during all indoor recreation activities, and also applies to children above the age of two.

Blood drive on September 9

The next community blood drive will take place on Wednesday, September 9 at the Multi Service Center (124 Grand Street). If you’d like to sign up for an appointment, please visit

Poll workers on Election Day

I’m very grateful to the 70+ residents who have offered to work the polls on Election Day this November – thank you! If you’d still like to work the polls please feel free to email

As always, please stay safe.


Ravi S. Bhalla