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COURT HOUSE - June 4: Cape May County followed yesterday’s report of no new COVID-19 cases with two confirmed cases today.

Both new cases were in Middle Township. One was community-based and the other was associated with a long-term care facility.

The metric on the COVID-19 spread in the county is trending well. In the last seven days, the county has seen only 25 new cases. Testing has increased, with a correspondingly low positivity rate and two out of every three individuals who have had a positive test since March are now recovered sufficiently to be off quarantine.

Cape May County has the lowest total case count among all of the state’s 21 counties.

Today, the state reported 92 new fatalities and 603 additional cases, bringing the state totals to 162,530 cases since March 4 and 11,970 deaths.

Gov. Phil Murphy also reported that the hospitalization numbers fell below 2,000, calling it a “milestone” in the struggle with the coronavirus. Hospitals across the state report 1982 COVID-19 patients, 537 of which require either intensive or critical care. A total of 406 patients are on ventilators.

Murphy also reported a rate of spread of each new case at less than one. That means that each new case of COVID-19 infection is producing less than one additional case through the spread of the disease. The governor then also reported a spot positivity rate of 4.2%. When coupled with a doubling of daily testing, a low positivity rate means that the testing is not finding large numbers of individuals in the population who are infected. Yesterday, Cape May County reported a mid-May positivity rate of 2.5%, lower and better than the state rate.

Risks will always be present with a reopening of activity, but the county’s metrics give a reason for a degree of optimism. The metrics for the amount of testing, positivity rates arising from the testing, a low new case rate of spread and declining hospitalizations all are hitting targets experts established for a safe reopening.

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