OCEAN COUNTY, NJ - Months ago, Governor Phil Murphy began daily press conferences to review data concerning the impact of COVID-19 on New Jersey residents. Soon thereafter, the Ocean County Health Department localized much of the same information for municipalities within the county. The start of June brings some encouraging results.
At one time, testing for COVID-19 was only available to those who exhibited symptoms related to the potentially deadly disease. Now that there are more tests available, anyone can be swabbed. According to the CDC, asymptomatic people can still spread the virus. Notably, at least one isolated study disputes the validity of that claim.
As of June 1, 8,716 coronavirus cases were reported within Ocean County. In the last ten days, the county reported less than 100 new positive results on a daily basis. Barnegat has 245 confirmed cases and Ocean Township (Waretown) 45; Stafford has 237 positive results, and Lacey has 219. The charts below show the positive results throughout each of the county's municipalities.
The New Jersey Department of Health offers additional insight concerning those suffering the ill effects of the disease. At one time, officials worried about availability of hospital beds and ventilators. Statewide, 2,372 residents are now confined to New Jersey hospitals for coronavirus complications. The state considers Ocean County a part of Central New Jersey, where 661 COVID-19 patients are receiving treatment.
At one time, ventilator use throughout the state neared 60 percent of capacity, with more than a couple thousand people needing mechanical assistance to breathe. Now, 459 people are on ventilators.
Statewide, 11,721 fatalities are attributed to COVID-19 related complications. Bergen County reported the most deaths with 1,580 deaths. In Ocean County, the disease has claimed 741 lives countywide. Barnegat now reports 11 deaths, Ocean Township, less than 5, Stafford 23, and Lacey, 11.
More than 80% of the deaths in Ocean County were over age 65. Thirteen individuals were between the ages of 19 and 44. The health department reports that 101 individuals were in the 45-64 age range.