Saliva-based testing will begin for residents and staff at New Jersey’s five developmental centers next week, Gov. Phil Murphy announced Thursday.
The testing was developed by Rutgers University and will bring a total of more than 5,500 tests to the centers, Murphy wrote on Twitter.
“These are among our most vulnerable residents and our most essential workers,” the governor said. “We owe our residents and staff our best, and testing will help us best serve them.”
The state’s Department of Health Services describes residents in the development centers as people with “intensive needs related to their developmental disabilities, and many also have co-occurring mental health, behavioral health and/or medical needs.”
Murphy also announced in his daily briefing that there were 4,247 new cases reported, putting the total number of confirmed cases in the state at 99,989. Deaths amounted to 5,368, after an additional 307, according to the governor.
He noted that while the curve is flat, people should not expect to be packed together anytime soon.