New data shows New Jersey’s rate of spread for the coronavirus is now higher than it was at the peak of the outbreak. Gov. Phil Murphy says he expects that number to climb even higher in the days ahead if residents don’t begin making serious efforts with mask wearing and more careful gatherings.
The rate of transmission is now well above 1.0 — a critical benchmark used by health officials — at 1.35. The daily spot positivity rate for July 27 was 2.15. But the rate of transmission and the spot positivity rate are in opposition to some good news. For the first time since March 10, New Jersey hospitals reported no new deaths in the last 24 hours. And, as of Friday afternoon, The Valley Hospital in Ridgewood, which was once part of the epicenter of the outbreak, had no coronavirus patients for the first time in nearly five months.
However, the number of new positive cases is ringing alarms. Friday health leaders reported 699 new confirmed tests for a statewide cumulative total of 181,660. That’s with 10 new fatalities and 15,798 confirmed and probable deaths.