By Ethan Resnik
The transmission rate of Covid-19 has increased as case numbers begin to rebound in New Jersey, prompting uneasiness among health experts in the state.
According to NJ.com, the state of New Jersey reported three more deaths from Covid-19 and 617 new cases on Sept. 17 — the first time in more than a month that there were more than 600 new cases in one day.
As a result, the transmission rate increased, which indicates that the outbreak is expanding in the state.
Deaths and hospitalizations, however, have remained stable in recent weeks, according to New Jersey’s Covid-19 dashboard.
Governor Murphy has also recently suggested, according to NJ.com, that none of the recent outbreaks could be attributed to indoor dining or gym facilities. He also suggested that a prolonged lack of outbreaks in the state would make way for more restrictions to be eased.
Health officials have warned of cases increasing among young people, according to NBC4 New York. This increase in cases among the younger generation has been attributed to students returning to school and young adults attending large gatherings.
“As American comes (sic) back to life and as people go back out and eat outside and doing sports, there has to be some reasonable expectation there are going to be more cases,” said Middletown Mayor Tony Perry to NBC4, speaking on a recent outbreak at the Middletown Sports Complex where 13 young hockey players tested positive.
The increase in Covid-19 cases has caused a change of plans in several school districts, according to NJ.com. About a dozen school districts had to switch students to virtual learning because of positive tests, which included the Hopewell Valley Regional school district in Pennington.
The State Department of Health has released guidelines for schools on how to handle cases of Covid-19. The guidelines instructed students to quarantine if exposed to the virus, and when teaching should switch from the classroom to online.
One recommendation is to shut down in-person learning if two people in multiple classrooms get sick within 14 days. “Closure is a local decision that should be made by school administrators in consultation with local public health,” the state guidelines said.
As of Sunday morning, there have been nearly 35 million positive Covid-19 tests across the world, according to Johns Hopkins University. The United States has the most positive tests in the world at more than 7.4 million, and the most deaths, at over 209,600.