VIRUS UPDATE: A ‘TOUGH’ WEEK OF DEATHS

Governor Phil Murphy ended his Saturday briefing by donning a State Police face covering. (YouTube screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

With 1,804 New Jersey residents added to the COVID-19 pandemic toll, Governor Phil Murphy wrapped up what he called “as tough a week as it relates to fatalities as we have had” in the crisis.

At the same time, “all 0f the important metrics in our hospitals continue to show positive trends,” he said at his daily briefing Saturday.

Nearly one-quarter of the 7,742 COVID-19 deaths reported since the first one March 10 have been reported since Sunday. That includes 205 more reported Saturday.

While the number of patients testing positive for the disease continues to rise, it is doing so at a slowing rate than seen two weeks ago, officials said. In addition, the number of patients in hospitals and on ventilators is down significantly, said state Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli.

At the briefing, held in the early afternoon, Murphy said state and local law enforcement officials were monitoring parks statewide for visitor compliance with social distancing and other behaviors to help stop the spread of the disease.

Saturday was the first day parks were open in three weeks, after Murphy reversed a shutdown order issued April 8.

“Early, preliminary, anecdotal” reports indicated “so far so good,” said Murphy, who has threatened to re-close the facilities if people gather in groups or don’t wear face coverings.

According to the state health department’s COVID-19 online database, 17 more Monmouth County resident deaths brought the county’s total to 372. Thirteen of the latest fatalities occurred at longterm care facilities, where 226 residents have now dies, the database reported.

Here are the latest statewide COVID-19 figures:

Deaths since March 10: 7,742, up 205 from Friday

Positive tests: 123,717, up 2,912

Patients in hospitals: 5,713, down 259

Patients in intensive/critical care: 1,715, down 9

Patients on ventilators: 1,239, down 32

Patients discharged in preceding 24 hours: 525, down 46

Separately, the Monmouth County freeholders reported 6,266 residents have now tested positive, with the breakdown by town below.

  • Aberdeen: 191
  • Allenhurst: 2
  • Allentown: 6
  • Asbury Park: 146
  • Atlantic Highlands: 24
  • Avon-by-the-Sea: 13
  • Belmar: 21
  • Bradley Beach: 30
  • Brielle: 24
  • Colts Neck: 66
  • Deal: 23
  • Eatontown: 191
  • Englishtown: 36
  • Fair Haven: 22, unchanged from Friday
  • Farmingdale: 12
  • Freehold Borough: 292
  • Freehold Township: 549
  • Hazlet: 243
  • Highlands: 24
  • Holmdel: 198
  • Howell: 525
  • Interlaken: 1
  • Keansburg: 114
  • Keyport: 73
  • Lake Como: 14
  • Little Silver: 32, down 1
  • Loch Arbour: 1
  • Long Branch: 377
  • Manalapan: 414
  • Manasquan: 30
  • Marlboro: 389
  • Matawan: 150
  • Middletown: 455
  • Millstone: 71
  • Monmouth Beach: 17
  • Neptune City: 42
  • Neptune Township: 359
  • Ocean: 231
  • Oceanport: 55
  • Red Bank: 146, up 5
  • Roosevelt: 5
  • Rumson: 30
  • Sea Bright: 9
  • Sea Girt: 13
  • Shrewsbury Borough: 42
  • Shrewsbury Township: 9
  • Spring Lake: 12
  • Spring Lake Heights: 17
  • Tinton Falls: 157
  • Union Beach: 38
  • Upper Freehold: 40
  • Wall: 226
  • West Long Branch: 57
  • Unknown: 2

As of Friday, the state reported 1 more positive case at Atrium at Navesink Harbor in Red Bank, for a total 12, with 4 deaths, unchanged from Thursday; and 53 cases and 8 deaths, both unchanged, at the Hackensack Meridian at Red Bank nursing facility (formerly Chapin Hill) on Chapin Avenue.