TRENTON – For the first time in almost five months, there are more than 1,000 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in New Jersey.

After declining in June, hospitalizations of patients with COVID have now inched past their recent peak around Memorial Day. The 1,013 reported by hospitals Tuesday night is the most since Feb. 20 – but is still a far cry from the roughly 6,000 six months ago and the peak above 8,000 in the spring of 2020.

North Jersey hospitals are at their five-month peak, while Central and South Jersey are still slightly behind theirs.

The patients include 113 in intensive care and 39 on ventilators.

With so many people who test positive doing so on home tests that aren’t reported to the state, the number of positive tests announced by the Department of Health isn’t an accurate gauge of virus activity.

Also, between high vaccination rates and the availability of medications, infections aren’t treated with the alarm they were early in the pandemic.

There were 2,776 cases confirmed by PCR tests and 1,024 detected by antigen tests reported by the state Wednesday. The rate of transmission is reported as 1.05, a statistic for which anything over 1 is evidence of a growing infection rate.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says COVID-19 community levels are high in six counties in New Jersey – Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May Monmouth and Morris – and medium in the rest of the state.

Michael Symons is the Statehouse bureau chief for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at michael.symons@townsquaremedia.com

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