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Key COVID-19 Trends Continue to Move in Right Direction for New Jersey

With the state rolling out its next steps to reopening the state, Gov. Phil Murphy was quick to remind residents there is still a lot of work to be done to defeat the coronavirus.

The governor rolled out how expanded COVID-19 testing would be implemented in the state in tandem with the contact tracing on May 12 with the warning that the state is not “out of the woods yet.”

“No state is currently as impacted as ours,” said Murphy.

Per Capita Leader

To illustrate the point, Murphy focused on a chart showing New Jersey being the hardest hit per capita compared to other states in three significant data categories. 

For new cases as of May 11, New Jersey is tops with 17 per 100,000 residents, followed by Connecticut with 13, New York with 11, Pennsylvania with 8, California with 5 and Texas with 4.

In the case of hospitalizations, New Jersey has 49 per 100,000, followed by New York at 38, Connecticut at 25, Pennsylvania at 17, California at 12 and Texas at 6. And although a lagging indicator, New Jersey has 2.3 deaths per 100,000, with Connecticut at 2.1, New York at 1.6, Pennsylvania at 1.4 and California and Texas both under one.

“Undeniable Progress”

Even with those grim statistics, Murphy reported “undeniable progress” in key data points on hospitalizations, ICU patients and ventilators.

According to state data as of May 11, new hospitalizations are down 71% since its peak April 10 and 44% since April 27. Patients in hospitals decreased 48% since its peak April 15 and 34% since April 27.

For the most severe cases, which reached its peak April 15, patients in the intensive care unit declined 36% since reaching the peak and patients on ventilators 41%. Since April 27, those numbers have dropped 28% and 26%, respectively.

Residents Credited

The biggest drop has been in new cases, down 61% since peaking April 4 and 49% since April 27.

Murphy credited residents with adhering to the stay-at-home order as well as following social distancing guidelines resulting in declining numbers.

“You have moved the trend lines in the right direction,” Murphy said. “This does not happen without the extraordinary efforts of everyone in this state”

Daily Numbers

As of May 12, the cumulative number of coronavirus cases in New Jersey reached 140,743 with 898 new cases and 198 new deaths, bringing that total to 9,508. The governor noted the number of new cases was the first time the count was under a thousand since March 25.  

Of the total deaths in North Jersey, Essex County has the most with 1,4444, followed by Bergen with 1,388, Hudson at 981, Passaic at 765, Morris at 523, Sussex at 135 and Warren with 108.

State Testing

The daily rate of infections from those tested as of May 10 has been in steady decline and currently rests at 23%.

Officials reported 4,328 patients are hospitalized with coronavirus—which included 360 new hospitalizations—while 164 patients were discharged. The north tier had 2,197 patients hospitalized, the central 1,329 and the south 802.

Officials broke down by tier the daily discharge and new hospitalizations. For May 12, the north reported 179 new hospitalizations and 67 discharges, the central 63 hospitalizations and 50 hospitalizations, and the south 118 hospitalizations and 47 discharges.   

Of those hospitalized,1,306 are in intensive care units and 982 on ventilators, the third day in a row the total was below 1,000. There are currently 34 patients in field hospitals, with 435 treated overall. 

Bergen Tops County Count

Bergen still has the most cumulative cases in the state with 17,091, followed by Hudson at 16,975, Essex at 15,658, Passaic at 14,716, Union at 14,203, Middlesex at 14,121, Ocean at 7,633, Monmouth at 7,041, Morris at 5,908, Mercer at 5,426, Camden at 5,043, Somerset at 4,115, Burlington at 3,697, Gloucester at 1,710, Atlantic at 1,558, Cumberland at 1,427, Warren at 1,061, Sussex at 1,038,  Hunterdon at 729, Cape May at 471 and Salem at 418.

Another 704 cases are still under investigation to determine where the person resides.

The amount of days it takes for a county to double its cases in all 21 counties continue to trend up, although cases in the South are doubling at a faster pace than the rest of the state, according to Murphy. In North Jersey, it has taken more than 30 days to double in Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Esex, Sussex, Passaic, Warren and Morris counties.

Demographic Breakdown

The racial breakdown of the record deaths was 54% White, 19% Black, 19% Hispanic, 6% Asian and 5% another race. For 40,309 hospitalizations that were tracked, the breakdown was 36% White, 20% Black, 18% Hispanic, 5% Asian and 11% another race. 

Murphy has noted the rates in the black and Hispanic communities are running about 50% more than their population in the state and vowed that any plan to reopen the state will work to reduce racial inequities in healthcare. The governor recently signed legislation mandating hospitals report age, gender, ethnicity and race of people who have tested COVID-19 positive or died from the virus.

In regards to the underlying disease of those who have passed, 59% had cardiovascular disease, 43% diabetes, 32% other chronic diseases, 17% neurological conditions, 15% chronic renal disease, 10% cancer and 14% other. Persichilli has stated most cases have multiple underlying conditions which would push the percentage of 100%.

A census of ages for 7,223 confirmed deaths shows 43% of deaths are of those 80 year old and up, 35% in the range of 65-80, 15% between 50-65 and 5% under the age of 49. 

Long-term Care Facilities

Health officials noted 518 long-term care facilities are reporting at least one case of COVID-19 and accounted for 26,476 of the cases and 4,953 of the total deaths. 

In a by-county breakdown, Bergen’s 63 facilities had 4,081 residents test positive with 799 total deaths, Essex’s 46 facilities had 2,518 residents test positive with 520 total deaths, Morris’s 41 facilities had 1,628 residents test positive with 395 total deaths, Passaic’s 25 facilities had 1,426 residents test positive with 299 total deaths, Hudson’s 15 facilities had 1,064 residents test positive with 166 total deaths, Warren’s seven facilities had 489 residents test positive with 93 total deaths and Sussex’s five facilities had 339 residents test positive with 100 total deaths. 

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