COVID-19 WATCH: HOSPITALIZATIONS CLIMB

Monmouth County hospitalizations of patients with COVID-19 have been rising steeply in recent weeks. (Monmouth County government data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njWith COVID-19 hospitalizations rising rapidly, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy implored residents to curtail their traditional Thanksgiving gatherings this week.

“We know that there are those who are so yearning for normalcy that they’re willing to risk their family’s health for a big Thanksgiving,” he said at his regular briefing on the COVID-19 pandemic Monday. But “we urge you to think beyond this holiday,” he said.

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RED BANK: COVID-19 CASES EXCEED 500

Hundreds lined up for free virus tests offered by Immediate Care in Red Bank’s White Street parking lot Saturday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank nj

With COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations climbing sharply across the United States and around the world, the case total in Red Bank since the start of the pandemic eclipsed 500 Tuesday.

Monmouth County government data show the the latest 100 cases among borough residents were recorded in only 17 days.
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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH TOPS 10K CASES

Case growth in Red Bank, Fair Haven and Little Silver. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njMonmouth County has now surpassed 10,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases, the freeholder board announced Thursday.

But four months into the pandemic, the county’s caseload and fatalities have slowed dramatically from the worst of the crisis in early April.

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RED BANK: LION IN WAIT… FOR A VACCINE?

A homeowner on River Road in Red Bank found an opportunity for humor in the increasingly politicized debate over masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Unlike the similarly masked lions guarding the New York Public Library’s main branch, these porch lions appear to be less than six feet apart, and thus in compliance with Governor Phil Murphy’s order, issued Wednesday, that masks be worn when social distancing is “not practicable.” (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

VIRUS UPDATE: ‘MASK UP,’ MURPHY ORDERS

red bank BROAD STREET PHIL TAMMY JOSH MURPHY 061820Governor Phil Murphy donned a mask while dining with his wife, Tammy, and son, Josh, at Char in Red Bank last month. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njNew Jerseyans must wear face coverings outdoors when social distancing is not practicable, Governor Phil Murphy ordered Wednesday.

The mandate marked the latest sign of concern about that Murphy labeled “backsliding” from earlier progress against the COVID-19 pandemic.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH DEATH TOLL AT 700

Monmouth County COVID-19 Fatalities 062320.pngOne hundred of Monmouth County’s fatalities have been reported since June 1. Below, a map shows the number of COVID-19 deaths per 100,000 population by county; the statewide figure is 147. (New Jersey Health Department data. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

COVID death rate per 100,000 by county 062324.pngOne hundred days after its first reported death from COVID-19, Monmouth County has now seen 700 fatalities in the pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy’s administration reported Tuesday.

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RED BANK: SALONS REOPEN

With the restoration of some personal-care services after three months, hair growers and stylists in Red Bank were eager to get back together Monday.

Gus Carter, owner of Gus’ Barber Shop on Shrewsbury Avenue, took it down to the scalp for customer Jimmy (last name withheld), above, and Tiffany Colelli at Hair & Co. on Monmouth Street, freshened up the color of Tricia Nelson’s locks.

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VIRUS UPDATE: STATE’S DEATH TOLL AT 12,049

The trajectory of new cases has shown gradual flattening in Monmouth County. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03With new COVID-19 illness totals showing continued abatement, New Jersey passed another grim milestone as the number of deaths in the pandemic topped 12,000, Governor Phil Murphy said Friday.

At the same time, Murphy lauded state residents for working to “beat the crap out of this virus,” with key indicators down 70 percent or more from peak spread as the state nears “stage two” of an economic reopening.

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VIRUS UPDATE: RED BANK CASES LEVELING

Governor Phil Murphy at his daily crisis briefing in Trenton Friday. (Pool photo by Thomas Costello for Gannett. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03For the second day in a row, Red Bank has seen no growth in the number of residents testing positive for COVID-19, Monmouth County officials reported Friday.

At the same time, a longterm care facility that has accounted for most of the borough’s deaths saw one more, the New Jersey Health Department reported.

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VIRUS UPDATE: COUNTY SEES 97 NEW CASES

Since early May, the Monmouth County’s COVID-19 case growth has largely stayed below 100 per day. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Monmouth County’s government reported 97 new confirmed COVID-19 cases among county residents Thursday, as other data also showed the pandemic continuing a monthlong weakening.

 

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VIRUS UPDATE: GUV SIGNALS FURTHER EASING

Murphy said the rolling three-day average of new COVID-19 cases continues to decline. (New Jersey Department of Health graphic. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Governor Phil Murphy signaled loosening of COVID-19 restrictions on sporting events and indoor religious services Wednesday.

Separately, Monmouth County reported the number of county residents with confirmed cases of the illness has now surpassed 8,000.

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VIRUS UPDATE: GRADUATIONS TO RESUME

Outdoor commencement ceremonies, like this Red Bank Charter School graduation in 2016, will be permitted, Murphy said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATES below]

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Graduation ceremonies can resume starting July 6, Governor Phil Murphy announced in another easing of COVID-19 restrictions Tuesday.

The change follows a three-day weekend in which key measures of the pandemic showed continued improvement over the Memorial Day weekend.

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VIRUS UPDATE: FACILITY CASELOAD UP BY 11

The Hackensack Meridian Health facility in Red Bank, seen here from Bank Street in 2019, has experienced 83 COVID-19 cases among residents and staff members, the state reported. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03COVID-19’s toll on one longterm care facility in Red Bank continued with 11 new infections reported Friday, bringing the total to 83 so far in the pandemic.

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VIRUS UPDATE: RED BANK CASE TOTAL RISES

Fair Haven, Little Silver and Red Bank COVID-19 Cases 052119.pngRed Bank’s confirmed case total continues to rise while Fair Haven’s and Little Silver’s have remained relatively stable. (Monmouth County data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Red Bank saw a spike in confirmed COVID-19 cases in data reported by Monmouth County officials Thursday.

The borough’s case total in the pandemic now stands at 194, an increase of 13 from Wednesday, the county freeholders reported.

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VIRUS UPDATE: CRISIS MEASURES CUT BY HALF

Governor Phil Murphy discussing hospital-related data Wednesday. (YouTube screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Key measures of the COVID-19 pandemic have fallen to half their peak levels, but New Jersey residents are still being hospitalized in large numbers, Governor Phil Murphy said Wednesday.

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VIRUS UPDATE: NO CLARITY ON GRADUATIONS

fair haven dock 051820Fair Haven’s municipal dock is open for taking in the vista along the Navesink River, but remains off-limits for fishing and crabbing. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Governor Phil Murphy is still trying to “figure out” how to hold safe graduation ceremonies under the lingering threat of a resurgent COVID-19 pandemic, he said Tuesday.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MURPHY EYES ‘NEW NORMAL’

nj hospitalizations 051820Statewide data shows sustained improvement by key measures in recent weeks, Murphy said. (New Jersey Department of Health data. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Governor Phil Murphy laid out a staged approach to getting the Garden State to a “new normal” way of life following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The plan, announced Monday at his daily briefing on the crisis, came as he also eased restrictions on outdoor activities such as community gardening and batting cages.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH DEATHS TOP 500

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03More than 500 Monmouth County residents have now died in the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy’s administration reported Sunday.

Three-hundred-seventy-two, or 73 percent, of the county’s 508 victims were residents or staff members at longterm care facilities, according to the New Jersey Health Department’s COVID-19 dashboard.

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VIRUS UPDATE: DEATH TOLL PASSES 10,000

Nearly 80 percent of the state’s COVID-19’s victims have been 65 or older. (Source: COVID19.nj.gov. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03As New Jersey’s death toll from COVID-19 crossed the 10,000 mark, Governor Phil Murphy said other indicators of the weakening pandemic made it safe for physicians to resume elective surgery.

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VIRUS UPDATE: BEACHES TO REOPEN, PARTLY

sea bright beach“There will be swimming,” but beach capacity may be restricted by oceanfront towns, Murphy said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Jersey shore beaches will be back in business for Memorial Day, if not quite full-tilt, Governor Phil Murphy said Thursday.

With COVID-19 fatalities, cases and hospitalizations on the wane statewide, New Jersey is ready to take “a big step… and do it in a way to protect the public health,” Murphy said at his daily press briefing on the pandemic.

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VIRUS UPDATE: LIMITS EASED ON RETAIL

Retailers may see some the return of activity with curbside pickup of orders allowed starting Monday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Citing continued gains in the fight against COVID-19, Governor Phil Murphy loosened his clampdown on retail business and construction Wednesday.

Separately, his administration reported 18 cases of a “serious” and possibly related illness in children and teens, a cohort that has been relatively spared in the two-month-old crisis.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MORE TESTS, TRACING SLATED

A helpful reminder painted on a stone seen outside the CVS pharmacy in Little Silver Monday. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03 Governor Phil Murphy unveiled plans to broaden testing and tracing for COVID-19 Tuesday.

The paired approaches, he said, offer New Jersey its “best chance at catching and containing” the illness, which has now claimed more than 9,500 lives, including 15 more in Monmouth County.

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