Kawasaki Disease Cases Grow in New Jersey

The numbers for a pediatric illness associated with the coronavirus continues to grow in New Jersey.

State Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli announced the state is now tracking a total of 30 Kawasaki disease during a daily COVID-19 briefing May 13. 

The state was notified of 11 new cases May 12 and eight more May 13. No deaths associated with the disease have been reported.

Throughout State

The age range for the cases are between 3 and 18 years old, with four testing positive for the coronavirus. The new cases are from nine different counties in the state— Bergen, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Passaic, Union, and Warren.

“They are all under investigation,” stated Persichilli, noting the state health officials are waiting on more reporting from their investigators as well as the CDC giving a case definition. 

The news comes as Gov. Phil Murphy noted data comparing the peak to now shows the state is ready to begin to restart the economy. Murphy cited new hospitalizations being down by two thirds, total hospitalizations down nearly half, patients in ICUs and on ventilators continuing to decline, positive cases down nearly 70% and deaths decreasing by more than a third.

Daily Numbers

As of May 13, the cumulative number of coronavirus cases in New Jersey reached 1141,560 with 1,029 new cases and 197 new deaths, bringing that total to 9,702. 

Of the total deaths in North Jersey, Essex County has the most with 1,471, followed by Bergen with 1,409, Hudson at 1,007, Passaic at 785, Morris at 531, Sussex at 136 and Warren with 114.

State Testing

The daily rate of infections from those tested as of May 19 has been in steady decline and currently rests at 22%.

Officials reported 4,226 patients are hospitalized with coronavirus—which included 364 new hospitalizations—while 382 patients were discharged. The north tier had 2,123 patients hospitalized, the central 1,331 and the south 741.

Officials broke down by tier the daily discharge and new hospitalizations. For May 12, the north reported 168 new hospitalizations and 190 discharges, the central 115 hospitalizations and 111 hospitalizations, and the south 84 hospitalizations and 91 discharges.   

Of those hospitalized,1,225 are in intensive care units and 928 on ventilators, the fourth day in a row the total was below 1,000. There are currently 34 patients in field hospitals, with 436 treated overall. 

Bergen Tops County Count

Bergen still has the most cumulative cases in the state with 17,150, followed by Hudson at 17,035, Essex at 15,749, Passaic at 14,757, Union at 14,306, Middlesex at 14,241, Ocean at 7,688, Monmouth at 7,090, Morris at 5,926, Mercer at 5,499, Camden at 5,099, Somerset at 4,127, Burlington at 3,726, Gloucester at 1,728, Atlantic at 1,584, Cumberland at 1,447, Warren at 1,066, Sussex at 1,041, Hunterdon at 732, Cape May at 479 and Salem at 428.

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 522 long-term care facilities are reporting at least one case of COVID-19 and accounted for 26,763 of the cases and 5,016 of the total deaths. 

In a by-county breakdown, Bergen’s 63 facilities had 4,059 residents test positive with 802 total deaths, Essex’s 46 facilities had 2,588 residents test positive with 525 total deaths, Morris’s 41 facilities had 1,708 residents test positive with 403 total deaths, Passaic’s 25 facilities had 1,442 residents test positive with 302 total deaths, Hudson’s 15 facilities had 1,048 residents test positive with 156 total deaths, Warren’s seven facilities had 489 residents test positive with 94 total deaths and Sussex’s five facilities had 341 residents test positive with 101 total deaths. 

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