Sussex County's COVID Cases Remain 'Very High:' See Town Updates

Russ Crespolini

SUSSEX COUNTY, NJ — The coronavirus continues to take a grim toll on Sussex County, impacting local businesses and schools in the region, according to updated state data.

The state Department of Health's most recent "COVID-19 Activity Level Report," which is issued weekly, says Sussex County is in the “red zone” for coronavirus cases.

The “red zone” means the daily new COVID-19 virus case rate, per 100,000 people, rose to "very high" in all 21 counties. That means they exceed 25 cases per 1,000 people.

The latest reports say the overall coronavirus activity level also rose from "moderate," or “yellow,” to "high," or “orange,” in recent weeks in all 21 New Jersey counties.

With the rise to a "high" level, state officials said, school districts in those counties may have to take more serious steps — such as quarantining or even shutting down schools — if a child shows the symptoms of COVID-19.

"When it is high risk, there are some recommendations that we make together with local school boards," said Edward Lifshitz, medical director for the state Department of Health.

Indeed, a number of school districts have shifted to remote instruction as the numbers have risen.

The overall coronavirus risk rose to "high" in each of the counties because:

The new daily case rate in each of the counties rose to 10 or more per 100,000 people. The percent of COVID-19-like illnesses rose above 5.52 in each of the counties. The percent of positive cases rose above 10.01.

As of midnight on Wednesday the Sussex County Division of Health (SCDOH) announced 99 additional cases of COVID-19 among County residents for a total number of 5,225 confirmed COVID-19 cases. Of the 5,225 cases, 3,193 cases have been classified as recovered. Additionally, the SCDOH reports 2 new deaths for a total of 216 deaths.

Fluctuations in numbers from previous dates may be due to cases being transferred out of the jurisdiction and/or further investigation revealed that the case was incorrectly reported to the NJDOH/local health department as confirmed.

The figures reflect COVID-19 positive cases as of the date and time indicated, some cases may be pending, or have yet to be entered into the system.

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This article originally appeared on the Hopatcong-Sparta Patch