TRENTON, NJ -- Gov. Phil Murphy proudly announced that 4,030,061 vaccinations have been administered throughout the state and that 1,473,409 New Jerseyans are fully vaccinated during press briefing today where he also reported a list of updates to citizens about the State’s evolving COVID-19 measures as well as other relevant statewide news and happenings.
The governor opened his press conference with a discussion regarding the six vaccine mega sites set up across New Jersey, as well as the expanded eligibility requirements for getting vaccinated. Additionally, the governor’s report included that as of March 29, a new group of citizens is eligible to be vaccinated, including:
- Restaurant, food processing and distribution industry workers
- Grocery personnel
- Warehouse workers
- Remaining eldercare workers
- Hospitality workers
- Election workers
- Postal/shipping workers
- Judicial system employees
Murphy projects that the state’s six vaccination mega sites will collectively surpass a milestone of one million doses administered to New Jersey residents. The governor also reported the latest COVID-19 numbers for the state:
- 3,174 new positive PCR tests, for a total of 792,616 total positive PCR tests
- 660 new positive antigen tests, bringing the total to 107,657 total positive antigen tests
- 2,225 patients in NJ hospitals with 491 patients in ICUs and 240 ventilators in use
- 16 new confirmed deaths, bringing the loss of life to 21,869 New Jersey residents since the pandemic began.
- a statewide rate of transmission of 1.1
After reporting the daily numbers for COVID-19 throughout the state, Murphy announced that he is signing an executive order to lower the restrictions around indoor gatherings and seating at large venues.
The threshold for venues to be considered “large venues” has been lowered to a range of 2,500-5,000 people. College and youth sporting events will be permitted up to 200 spectators if the outdoor venue can accommodate appropriate social distancing. Capacity for indoor seating at these types of venues has been increased to 20% and the capacity for outdoor seating at the same venues has been increased to 30%. The general outdoor gathering limit has increased to 200 people, and the general indoor gathering limit will remain at 25 people. All updated restrictions will take effect on April 2, at 6:00 a.m.
The order also clarifies that banquet halls and similar dining establishments and venues that use a licensed caterer can host indoor celebrations and other private catered events at 35 percent of the room’s capacity, up to 150 persons.
“We know this virus is many times more transmissible indoors than it is outdoors,” said Murphy. “As the weather continues to get warmer, we urge everyone to engage in social activities outside whenever possible.”
“Additionally, we are confident in increasing capacity in our large venues as we have seen the strict enforcement of our COVID-19 health and safety protocols by spectators since we reopened these venues last month," he added. "By continuing to follow public health guidance and data, I am hopeful that we will be able to responsibly and incrementally expand capacities in the coming months.”
Mental Health Support
Murphy announced the introduction of a mental health hotline for New Jersey residents who are feeling the enormous emotional and mental toll of the past year. Emotional and Mental Health Support is available for free to any citizen and can be accessed via text message or phone. The services can be accessed through the resources below:
- Call 866-202-HELP
- Text “NJHOPE” to 51684 .
- Videophone 973-870-0677 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing