OCEAN COUNTY, NJ -  Today's news that Governor Phil Murphy increased outside gatherings from 10 to 25 people reflects a slowing in the spread of the coronavirus.   The same decline is documented in Ocean County.

On Wednesday, the Ocean County Health Department reported a total of 8112 confirmed coronavirus cases. As of today, there are 8242 positive test results, which represents a two-day increase of just 130 new COVID-19 cases.  

In Barnegat, the number of confirmed cases is now at 223, while Ocean Township (Waretown) has increased to 45 positive test results. In Southern Ocean County, Stafford saw the most significant addition of new confirmed cases and is now at 226. Lacey has 201 positive test results.

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Lakewood continues to lead the county with the most positive COVID-19 test results and has now toppled over 2200 to 2237. Brick and Toms River both have more than four digit confirmed cases.

Notably, long term care facilities are testing more and individuals who are asymptomatic are also taking advantage of free tests. A positive result does not mean a serious negative outcome. That said, medical experts agree that there is no indication why the virus hits some seemingly healthy people so hard.

Statewide, nearly 11,000 residents have died of coronavirus complications. In Ocean County, 679 fatalities are attributed to COVID-19. While nearly 80 percent of those who have died were over age 65, an Ocean County resident just over the age of 20 succumbed to the deadly virus.