Another Verona resident has died of COVID-19, the third such death since mid-December and the 21st death since Essex County began keeping statistics on the pandemic in March 2020. Most of Verona’s COVID deaths occurred during the first year of the pandemic, and COVID-19 was the third leading cause of death in Verona in 2020.
Essex County, which disclosed the death on Tuesday in its daily statistics, does not name the deceased or provide information on the COVID variant implicated in the person’s death or the person’s vaccination status. Verona’s previous recent COVID deaths were reported on January 6 and December 15.
The Verona deaths are something of an outlier in current COVID trends in Essex County. As of December 15, there had been 2,879 COVID deaths in the county since March 2020. Today, that number has risen by 107 to 2,986. Most of the recent deaths have been in Newark.
After a surge in December and early January, publicly reported cases of COVID-19 may have begun to decline in Verona. There were just 22 new cases reported today, but a total of 628 for the month so far. However, Essex County cautions in its daily report on the virus that the number of infected individuals in any municipality is likely to be much greater than indicated because its data includes only people whose test results have been reported to the state. Most at-home testing kits do not include reporting.
According to the COVID dashboard maintained by Verona’s public schools, 41 individuals in the school population are in quarantine for the virus, down from 81 on January 5. The district reported 55 positive cases of individuals who had been in school during the contagious period and 36 positives among people who had not been in school during the contagious period.
Verona’s vaccination rate now stands at 76%, up from from 75% in early December, according to the state COVID dashboard.