Murphy Discusses Reopening, Allows Foreign-Licensed Physicians to Practice

Temporary emergency licenses for foreign-licensed physicians will be issued in New Jersey by the Attorney General’s Office via the Division of Consumer Affairs, Gov. Phil Murphy announced at today’s state COVID-19 press conference.

“In doing this, New Jersey is the first state to begin fully tapping the tremendous wealth of an international knowledge and experience to help us on our own front lines,” Murphy said.

He added, “It is entirely fitting that we are the first state to do this. This is a state where the immigrant experience is writ large in our collective history. This is a state where people from all over the world have come to live a new life and live the American Dream.”

More information about the program is available here.

Reopening Plans

Although an additional 3,250 COVID-19 cases were reported at today’s press conference for a cumulative total of 78,467 New Jersey cases, Murphy spoke about eventually reopening the economy.

He cited the important roles that would be played by: massive and rapid COVID-19 testing; contact tracing (what Murphy described as “a combination of humans and technology”); and the ability to appropriately quarantine infected individuals.

Murphy said the plans are not yet completed, and he used the analogy of a light dimmer, stating that such plans “will give you all – and will give us – the confidence we need to turn that dimmer up on the light switch [of reopening]. It is not going to be a flip.”

Murphy additionally said that federal monies will be necessary. The Trump Administration yesterday outlined overall reopening guidance for states, including but not limited to the notion that states should first experience decreases in cases, engage in massive testing, conduct contact tracing and have appropriate healthcare resources to deal with newly sickened individuals.

COVID-19 Update

New Jersey had 8,011 COVID-19 hospitalizations as of 10 p.m. last night, as well as 1,961 patients in intensive care, 1,594 patients on ventilators – and 789 discharged patients. Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli noted that hospitalizations were down 2% when compared to the previous day.

There were likewise 323 deaths officially reported today, for a statewide total of 3,840. State Epidemiologist Dr. Christina Tan reminded the audience that fatalities are a “lagging” indicator and that, in effect, time elapses between when a patient is first infected and when they pass away.

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