Forecasting tool shows mid-April peak for COVID-19 deaths, hospital demand in New Jersey

An IHME chart shows that peak demand for hospitals because of COVID-19 is projected to take place in the middle of April.

A forecasting tool created by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation estimates that hospital bed usage and deaths due to the COVID-19 outbreak will peak between April 7 and April 21 in New Jersey.

The peak date for hospital bed usage is estimated to be April 9. The state could face a shortage of 1,687 hospital beds, according to the forecasting model.

In New Jersey, the peak date for deaths is projected to be April 10. The forecasting model estimates that 104 people will die in New Jersey on that date. COVID-19 deaths in New Jersey could total 2,096 by Aug. 4, according to the forecasting tool.

Christopher Murray, the chairman of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, created the forecasting tool to estimate the dates for peak hospital bed demand and deaths due to COVID-19 in each state. The forecasting tool predicts hospital use and deaths due to COVID-19 by day for the next four months for each state using data on confirmed COVID-19 deaths by day from World Health Organization websites, local and national governments, and observed COVID-19 data from select locations.

In addition to a large number of deaths from COVID-19, the epidemic in the U.S. will exceed the current capacity of hospitals, especially for ICU care. The forecasting tool estimates that New Jersey could have a shortage of 1,687 hospital beds at the peak of the epidemic.

The forecasting tool projections assume the continuation of strong social distancing measures and other protective measures. The estimated excess demand on hospital systems is predicated on the enactment of social distancing measures and maintenance of these measures throughout the epidemic. Enforcing and maintaining social distancing measures will help mitigate hospital system overload and prevent deaths.

View detailed projections by state on the IHME website.


  1. As things stand now, regular routine check-ups and maintenance are on hold for quite some time. The dentists and doctors are only taking emergencies. This is not good, I have a dental check up and tooth cleaning set for June, will that be cancelled, too? The eye check up for October? A regular physical with the primary care physician? When? Buying a new pair of prescription glasses, that’s a face to face procedure to assure proper fit and quality level.

  2. This data is a little misleading, because it implies there will be only one peak. This is very likely only the peak of the first wave, particularly if the federal government succeeds in ending social-distancing and isolation measures when the numbers begin to fall. If and when that occurs, we will still have no immunity and no vaccine, and if the current measures are relaxed the coronavirus will again explode.

  3. The IHME model “predicts” that New Jersey would exceed ICU bed capacity end of last week (March 27), and get worse from there.

    Did that actually happen? It would be interesting to know either way.

  4. Overall, I have difficulties with this. There is not enough data as yet to develop a model of any significance. Many of the assumptions of multiple variables will change as health resources are depleted this week. We have no idea what the penetrance of the virus is in the general population and what the significant covariates are. Reporting actual dates and responses is premature and gives a false sense that we know what is going on in detail.

    1. it is the best estimate they have- and it has a margin expressed by the “wide lavendar band.” the estimators no doubt studied the peaks in other countries.

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