LATEST DARIEN COVID-19 NEWS: Continual Updates: April 20 to 26

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News and links on the COVID-19 pandemic for Darien:

LATEST UPDATES: State Sen. Bob Duff to hold “Coronavirus Town Hall” online starting at 7 p.m., Sunday night; Nobu Miki’s art auction for Corbin Cares is being extended to 11 p.m.; Latest COVID-19 positive tests in lower Fairfield County; You can now walk at Waveny Park and on other public trails in New Canaan; Governor’s Saturday briefing.

See also:

SUNDAY State Statistics on COVID-19 Cases in Lower Fairfield County

Sunday, April 26 — As of Sunday, 178 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, the same as the day before, according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,255 cases (eight more than the 2,247 on Saturday)
Norwalk — 1,409 (seven more than the 1,402 on Saturday)
New Canaan — 129 (one more than the 128 on Saturday)
Greenwich — 625 (five more than the 620 on Saturday)
Westport — 230 (no new cases; the same number as the 230 on Saturday)
Wilton — 144 (no new cases; the same number as the 144 on Saturday)
Weston — 60 (one more than the 59 on Saturday)
Ridgefield — 174 (two more than the 172 on Saturday)
Fairfield — 365 (13 more than the 352 on Saturday)
Bridgeport — 1,705 (65 more than the 1,705 on Saturday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,247), 2. Bridgeport (1,768), 3. Norwalk (1,409), 4. New Haven (1,411), 5. Danbury (1,321), 6. Waterbury (1,131),  7. Hartford (898), 8. West Haven (653), 9. Greenwich (625), 10. Hamden (549).

COVID-19 CT April 26, 2020

Image from the state government website

COVID-19 confirmed cases in Connecticut, by municipality

SW CT COVID-19 confirmed cases by municipality April 26, 2020

Southwestern Connecticut COVID-19 confirmed cases by municipality (a closeup of the map above)

SUNDAY COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Sunday, April 26 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Governor Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 4 p.m. on Sunday, April 26, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

“When you take a broad look at the data over the last two weeks, we’ve shown that we can flatten the curve and control the spread of this virus through kinds of social distancing measures that we’ve implemented – but we are not out of the woods yet,” Lamont said.

“When it comes creating an action plan on the steps we should take next, our primary objective needs to focus on not causing any harm to the progress we have made so far, otherwise our infection and hospitalization rates will go right back up.” he said.

“Our health care system has been amazing throughout this pandemic, and we are going to continue working with them to ramp up testing even more, including through antibody tests and contact tracing. This approach is key to getting people back to work and ensuring that workers are adequately protected when they return.”

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 25,269 +687
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,924 +62
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,766 -44
Patients tested for COVID-19 79,811 +2,209

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 10,529 635 707
Hartford County 4,989 426 579
Litchfield County 864 22 74
Middlesex County 588 37 66
New Haven County 6,715 605 429
New London County 498 31 31
Tolland County 407 5 35
Windham County 157 5 3
Pending address validation 522 0 0
Total 25,269 1,766 1,924

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Governor Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system

Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access. It intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

 

State Sen Bob Duff Announces ‘Coronavirus Town Hall’ for Sunday Night

Sunday, April 26 — Sen. Bob Duff, the Democratic majority leader in the state Senate, announced that he’s holding a “Coronavirus Town Hall” here, on Instagram,, starting at 7 p.m., Sunday. Here’s a tweet from Duff, who represents Darien and Norwalk:

Bob Duff Coronavirus 2020 Covid-19 2020

Nobu Miki’s Art Auction for Corbin Cares Extended to 11 PM

Sunday, April 26 — Nobu Miki send out an email Sunday saying, “since some people have heard that it is ending at 11PM, we are extending the auction until then. Another 12 hours of an exciting battle for a good cause! I’m so sorry for any confusion.”

Sunflowers in a painting by Nobu Miki

SATURDAY State Statistics on COVID-19 Cases in Lower Fairfield County

Saturday, April 26 — As of Friday, the state reports 178 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, two more than the day before, according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,247 cases (24 more than the 2,223 on Friday)
Norwalk — 1,402 (12 more than the 1,390 on Friday)
New Canaan — 128 (no new cases; the same number as on Friday)
Greenwich — 620 (six more than the 614 on Friday)
Westport — 230 (two more than the 228 on Friday)
Wilton — 144 (three more than the 141 on Friday)
Weston — 59 (two more than the 57 on Friday)
Ridgefield — 172 (one more than the 171 on Friday)
Fairfield — 352 (six more than the 346 on Friday)
Bridgeport — 1,705 (65 more than the 1,640 on Friday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,247), 2. Bridgeport (1,705), 3. Norwalk (1,402), 4. New Haven (1,377), 5. Danbury (1,300), 6. Waterbury (1,104),  7. Hartford (848), 8. West Haven (641), 9. Greenwich (620), 10. Hamden (533).

CT COVID-19 confirmed by town Saturday April 25, 2020

Image from the state government website

The spread of COVID-19 confirmed cases, by municipality, as of Saturday, April 25

SW CT CT COVID-19 confirmed by town Saturday April 25, 2020

Image from the state government website

COVID-19 confirmed cases in southwest Connecticut (closeup of the map above)

New Canaan Opens Walking Trails in Parks

Saturday, April 25 — Mike Handler, New Canaan Emergency Management director, announced in his nightly email on Saturday that New Canaan is opening its walking trails on Sunday morning. Other features of the town’s parks will remain closed.

Here’s the announcement about that:

“Tomorrow morning, all New Canaan walking trails will open.  We trust that residents will use common sense and maintain proper social distancing.  If possible, we suggest that you wear a face covering.

“Again, this is just a suggestion and we leave it up to you to decide what is appropriate given your activity.  We hope this reduces some of the congestion on our roadways.

“As a reminder, if you are walking on our streets, please walk against oncoming vehicular traffic—this also applies to pedestrians on our sidewalks.  This is both the safest way to walk and will have the added benefit of making our sidewalks directionally one-way where there are sidewalks on both sides of the street.

“Please know that all other aspects of our parks will remain closed until further notice—this includes the playgrounds, parks, fields and anything else.”

SATURDAY COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Saturday, April 25 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Governor Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 25, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

“In the coming days and weeks, we will be significantly increasing the state’s capacity to test our residents, specifically those first responders and essential employees who are on the front lines, because testing is a key component of re-opening our economy,” Lamont said.

“Data has shown that a significant number of people who are infected don’t even show symptoms and are unaware that they are spreading this virus to other people.

This is why it is so important that we increase our testing, and working with the federal government and our state’s health care system we will be adding more collection sites and increase access to those who need it.”

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 24,582 +661
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,862 +98
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,810 -67
Patients tested for COVID-19 77,602 +3,564

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 10,373 649 689
Hartford County 4,761 443 553
Litchfield County 834 22 73
Middlesex County 576 41 62
New Haven County 6,509 610 416
New London County 473 33 28
Tolland County 384 6 35
Windham County 151 6 3
Pending address validation 521 0 3
Total 24,582 1,810 1,862

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

FREE FACE COVERINGS FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

Lamont partners with CBIA and CONNSTEP to distribute free face coverings for small businesses

Governor Lamont today announced that his administration is partnering with the Connecticut Business and Industry Association (CBIA) and its affiliate CONNSTEP on an initiative to distribute free face coverings to eligible, essential small businesses with fewer than 50 employees.

Eligible businesses include those defined as essential businesses by the Department of Economic and Community Development.

“The more proactive measures we can take to prevent the spread of this virus and keep everyone healthy, the sooner we’ll be able to reopen operations,” Lamont said.

“We were able to secure over 4 million masks this week that have replenished our supplies and put us in a position to support small businesses. I appreciate our partners at CBIA and CONNSTEP for partnering with us on this effort to get those needed face coverings out to essential employees.”

Eligible essential small businesses can request up to two free face coverings per employee by filling out the form found here.

Small businesses are strongly urged to create their own face coverings following CDC guidelines. This will ensure the limited supply of coverings go to small businesses that are struggling to secure their own supply.

Requested face coverings will be distributed next week through the municipality in which the business is located. The local municipality will then contact businesses with a date, time, and location to receive the requested masks.

The distribution will continue while supplies last. The initiative is intended to help small businesses comply with the governor’s executive order requiring dace coverings to be worn whenever social distancing is not possible, including in essential businesses.

DISPOSE OF UNWANTED MEDICATION AT HOME

Residents encouraged to safely dispose of unwanted medication at home as an alternative to National Drug Takeback Day events

If not for COVID-19, thousands of Connecticut residents would be visiting one of the nearly 100 drug drop boxes at police stations across the state today to mark National Drug Takeback Day.

This year, in light of the pandemic, residents are asked to avoid visiting the drug drop boxes, and take steps to secure, and clean out their medicine cabinets at home.

Here’s what residents can do:

  • Dispose of any unneeded medication at home by running it under hot water, combining it with something undesirable like used coffee grounds or kitty litter, securing it in a container, and disposing of it in the trash. Do not flush medication down the toilet.
  • Secure any of your expired or unneeded medication in a safe place so that it’s ready to go as soon as you’re able to visit a drug drop box again.

Last year, 59,058 pounds of unneeded medication were disposed of in drug drop boxes, an increase of more than 15,000 pounds from 2018.

For more information, read the press release issued today by the Department of Consumer Protection.

  • Governor Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system
  • Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.
  • Providing information to Connecticut residents
  • For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.
  • Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access. It is intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

Darien Artist Nobu Miki’s Art Auction Ends 11 AM Sunday

Saturday, April 25 — Nobu Miki announced in an email Saturday morning:

My art auction has raised over $8,000 already! I want to thank everyone who took the time to visit the auction site to bid or to look at my artwork.

Thanks also to the people who have helped spread the word about the auction and to the people who have said warm words of encouragement to me. I’m overwhelmed by your kindness, and I truly appreciate the people who are bidding on my artwork to raise money for Corbin Cares.

"Cherry Lawn Oak Spring" by Nobu Mki 2020

“Cherry Lawn Oak Spring” by Nobu Mki

The auction will end tomorrow, Sunday, April 26, at 11am. If you haven’t visited the site yet, please take a look to see if you can find a piece of art which speaks to your heart.

I have attached a link to the auction site, which has information relating to Corbin Cares as well as the Darien Foundation.

To see and bid on paintings, visit: bit.ly/CCAuctionNobu

FRIDAY COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Friday, April 24 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Governor Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 7 p.m. on Friday, April 24, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 23,921 +821
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,764 +125
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,877 -70
Patients tested for COVID-19 74,038 +2,541

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 10,227 694 662
Hartford County 4,570 462 511
Litchfield County 808 22 69
Middlesex County 561 39 63
New Haven County 6,286 617 396
New London County 448 33 23
Tolland County 375 4 34
Windham County 139 6 3
Pending address validation 507 0 3
Total 23,921 1,877 1,764

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Updated list of nursing homes with residents who have tested positive for COVID-19

The following document is a list of every nursing home in Connecticut with residents who have tested positive for COVID-19, along with corresponding data regarding the number of related fatalities among residents in each facility. The data was reported to the state by each of the nursing homes. This list is updated on a weekly basis.

Governor Lamont signs 33rd executive order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19

Governor Lamont today signed another executive order – the 33rd since he enacted the emergency declarations – that builds upon his efforts to encourage mitigation strategies that slow down transmission of the virus. Executive Order No. 7FF enacts the following provisions:

  • Additional flexibility for Medicaid-enrolled providers to perform telehealth through audio-only methods for new patients: Expands the definition of telehealth services in order to permit Medicaid-enrolled providers offering covered telehealth services to “new or established patients” who are Medicaid recipients to engage in telehealth through the use of audio-only telephone.

Governor Lamont announces federal approval of $72.3 million in new SNAP food benefits for children in free and reduced-price school lunch program

Governor Lamont announced that the State of Connecticut received federal approval today for its plan to provide $72.3 million in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to children eligible for the free and reduced-price meals program. Authorized by the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, the new Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) program is expected to bring food benefits to about 270,000 Connecticut children who are not able to receive meals at school.

The Department of Social Services (DSS) initially estimates that it will issue approximately $34 million to 70,000 SNAP-eligible households and $38.3 million to 80,000 non-SNAP-eligible households for school closures extending from March 17 through May 20. DSS partnered with the State Department of Education on the plan approved today by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Services.

DSS estimates that SNAP benefits will be deposited in EBT accounts beginning in mid-May. Families do not need to apply for these benefits, as children are automatically eligible because school is not in session.  The planned benefit is $267.90 per child enrolled in the free and reduced-price meals program.  Additional benefits may be provided if school closures extend beyond May 20. Further information will be posted as it becomes available at www.ct.gov/snap.

Residents encouraged to consider non-perishable food donations to Connecticut’s food pantries

Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents with extra canned and other non-perishable food items to make a donation to a food pantry in their area. To find local food pantries, visit www.211ct.org/foodpantries. Monetary donations are also welcome, as are monetary donations to Connecticut’s regional food banks – Foodshare and the Connecticut Food Bank.

Governor Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system

Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access. It intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

Raytheon (United Technologies) Giving $3 Million Worth of PPEs, Charter Transport for CT Health Workers, First Responders

Friday, April 24 — Gov. Ned Lamont today announced that Raytheon Technologies — the recently merged company consisting of Raytheon Company and United Technologies — is donating more than $3 million worth of charter transportation and personal protective equipment (PPE) to the State of Connecticut’s relief supplies, which will be distributed by the state to first responders and front line health care professionals.

The donation includes 455,000 KN95 medical masks, 325,000 surgical masks, 120,000 protective coveralls, and 4,500 ICU coveralls.

The gear is being purchased from suppliers in China and shipped to the Connecticut Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security commodities warehouse, where it will be sorted and delivered to those in need through a joint operation with the Connecticut National Guard.

The Raytheon Technologies team on the ground in China coordinated the logistics of the acquisition and air travel to the United States. The first shipment is scheduled to arrive in Connecticut on Sunday.

“Getting PPE to front line workers who are battling this pandemic is a top priority, and amid a global shortage of this gear we are appreciative to have corporate partners like Raytheon Technologies that are utilizing their resources and supply chain to boost Connecticut’s supplies and get this equipment to those who need it the most,” Lamont said.

“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health of our communities and the global economy has been swift and unprecedented,” Raytheon Technologies CEO Greg Hayes said. “[W]e have been able to come together and mobilize teams on the ground in China to source and transport this urgently needed PPE shipment, and I want to thank everyone involved.”

“Connecticut has been home to Pratt & Whitney for 95 years, and we feel strongly that if we all band together to help our communities, we will get through this moment of great need,” Pratt & Whitney President Chris Calio said.

“Our teams are working tirelessly to source, organize and assemble equipment to take care of medical workers around the world — and those who are taking care of the communities in which we live and work,” Collins Aerospace President Stephen Timm said.

Raytheon Technologies Corporation is an aerospace and defense company that provides advanced systems and services for commercial, military and government customers worldwide. It comprises four industry-leading businesses – Collins Aerospace Systems, Pratt & Whitney, Raytheon Intelligence & Space and Raytheon Missiles & Defense.

The company was formed earlier this month through the merger of Raytheon Company and the United Technologies Corporation aerospace businesses.

FRIDAY State Statistics on COVID-19 Cases in Lower Fairfield County

Friday, April 14 — As of Friday, the state reports 176 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, no more than the day before (but see the next paragraph for a different count), according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

On Thursday evening, First Selectman Jayme Stevenson posted this information on Facebook: “177 total Darien Cases, 9 hospitalizations, 4 deaths
*local data may vary from data in the attached report.” That’s one more case than the state is reporting on Friday.

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,223 cases (41 more than the 2,182 on Thursday)
Norwalk — 1,390 (15 more than the 1,365 on Thursday)
New Canaan — 128 (an adjustment to one fewer than the 127 on Thursday)
Greenwich — 614 (four more than the 610 on Thursday)
Westport — 228 (four more than the 224 on Thursday)
Wilton — 141 (one more than the 140 on Thursday)
Weston — 57 (the same as on Thursday)
Ridgefield — 171 (four more than the 167 on Thursday)
Fairfield — 346 (11 more than the 335 on Thursday)
Bridgeport — 1,640 (63 more than the 1,577 on Thursday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,223), 2. Bridgeport (1,640), 3. Norwalk (1,390), 4. New Haven (1,324), 5. Danbury (1,299), 6. Waterbury (1,062),  7. Hartford (821), 8. West Haven (620), 9. Greenwich (614), 10. Hamden (516).

Online Auction of Nobu Miki Paintings to Benefit Seniors, ‘Food Insecure’ Families

Thursday, April 23 — An announcement from the Darien Foundation:

Local artist Nobu Miki has put up 20 of her paintings for online auction to benefit seniors and food insecure families in Darien. 100% of the proceeds will go toward the provision of healthy, restaurant-prepared meals via The Darien Foundation and Corbin Cares. 

The Darien Foundation Executive Director Sarah Woodberry said: “To put it mildly, we were awestruck by the profound generosity displayed by Nobu. This time has brought out so much caring, creativity and compassion in our community. We are thankful to Nobu, and we know that her painting will bring so much joy to the winning bidders.”

David Genovese of Baywater Properties added: “We have known Nobu for many years and worked with her in creating Art on the Plaza, the annual art show featuring local artists on Grove Street Plaza. Her art so beautifully reflects the community of Darien, both physically and spiritually.  We are grateful for Nobu’s contributions to the cause of Corbin Cares.”

Nobu Miki COVID-19 painting Hope

Paiinting by Nobu Miki

People can bid on any of Miki’s modern folk-art paintings through Sunday, April 26 at 11:00 p.m. and all winning bids and donations are tax-deductible and will come with a tax-acknowledgment receipt.

The Corbin Cares initiative launched on Monday, March 30, and provides approximately 40 healthy, ready-to-eat lunches prepared by local restaurants each day for seniors, as well as substantial dinners for four to approximately 75 families suffering from food insecurity. 

To visit the online auction, see and bid on paintings, people can simply visit: bit.ly/CCAuctionNobu

THURSDAY: COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Thursday, April 23 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Gov. Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 23, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 23,100 +631
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,639 +95
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,947 -25
Patients tested for COVID-19 71,497 +1579

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 10,008 730 615
Hartford County 4,303 490 469
Litchfield County 751 22 66
Middlesex County 545 38 57
New Haven County 6,064 626 372
New London County 419 31 17
Tolland County 359 6 33
Windham County 129 4 4
Pending address validation 522 0 6
Total 23,100 1,947 1,639

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Updated nursing home data anticipated to be released Friday

The weekly release of data regarding COVID-19 in each of the state’s nursing homes is anticipated to be released on Friday, April 23.

Lamont signs 32nd executive order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19

Governor Lamont today signed another executive order – the 32nd since he enacted the emergency declarations – that builds upon his efforts to encourage mitigation strategies that slow down transmission of the virus.

Executive Order No. 7EE enacts the following provisions:

  • Mandatory reporting by managed residential communities: Requires all managed residential communities, including assisted living facilities, to provide daily status reports to the state using the existing Connecticut Hospital and Long-Term Care Mutual Aid Plan.
  • Mandatory reporting by nursing homes: Requires all nursing homes to provide daily status reports using the Connecticut Hospital and Long-Term Care Mutual Aid Plan.
  • Civil Penalties for failure to comply with mandatory reporting: Subjects nursing homes that fail to comply with the mandatory reporting requirements of this order to civil penalties of up to $5,000 per violation.
  • Waiving certain Medicaid prior authorization requirements: Modifies state statutes and regulations to authorize the commissioner of the Department of Social Services to temporarily waive, suspend, or modify any prior authorization and other utilization review requirements.
  • Waiving Medicaid bed reservation requirements for residents who are on leave from intermediate care facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities: Authorizes the commissioner of the Department of Social Services to temporarily waive, suspend, or modify requirements to reserve beds for certain time periods for residents who are on home leave or who are hospitalized.
  • Waiving requirements for signed delivery receipt for medical equipment, devices, and supplies: Authorizes the commissioner of the Department of Social Services to temporarily waive, suspend, or modify requirements for providers of medical equipment, devices, and supplies to obtain a signed delivery receipt from the Medicaid member as a condition of payment.

State launches program to coordinate housing solutions for individuals re-entering society

The Connecticut Office of Policy Management (OPM) — in partnership with the Department of Housing, the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness (CCEH), United Way 2-1-1, the Department of Correction (DOC), and housing and homeless service providers across the state — is launching a new program to coordinate housing solutions for individuals re-entering the community from incarceration.

OPM has awarded an initial grant of $148,500 to provide flexible funds to assist re-entry clients, who would otherwise be discharging to homelessness, identify and secure alternative housing solutions. CCEH will be administering these funds, which are flexible and can be used for housing related costs such as moving expenses, security deposits, and rental assistance in order to prevent homelessness.

Key homeless service providers across the state have expanded their capacity to assist these clients prior to discharge, working with DOC, CCEH, United Way 2-1-1, and Court Support Services Division within the Connecticut Judicial Branch to coordinate solutions and reduce inflows into homelessness.

The Transitions Clinic at Yale also offers important medical and mental health support coordination for individuals re-entering the community. Under this grant, funding for cell phones for reentering citizens is included to help individuals connect with telehealth providers such as Transitions to coordinate their healthcare needs remotely wherever possible and help prevent unnecessary use of hospital emergency rooms for non-emergency healthcare needs.

Regional lead agencies include Supportive Housing Works, Community Health Resources, New London Homeless Hospitality Center, Thames Valley Council for Community Action, Mental Health Connecticut, United Way of Greater New Haven, and New Opportunities.

“The DOC, its partner agencies, criminal justice stakeholders, and homeless service providers are working around the clock during this public-health emergency to help people who otherwise would return to the community homeless,” said Marc Pelka, OPM undersecretary of criminal justice policy and planning, said.

“At a time when community resources, particularly housing services, are facing strain, I wholeheartedly support efforts to help set people returning to the community up for success while helping safeguard Connecticut’s emergency shelters, which are reducing density in accordance with public health requirements.”

“Our Department of Correction views housing as one of the most important factors for successful reentry, and safe and stable housing has become even more critical as we face the additional challenges around the COVID-19 pandemic,” Correction Commissioner Rollin Cook said. “This progressive new program will enable DOC to prevent more people from leaving DOC only to wind up homeless, not only during these difficult times, but well into the future.”

“The current public health crisis makes it more evident than ever that securing housing solutions prior to discharge is not only the right thing to do, but also in the best interest of society as a whole,” Dr. Richard Cho, CEO of CCEH, said. “This is a step forward, and we are grateful for our partnership with the state to end the revolving door between homelessness and incarceration.”

This program is part of a larger, statewide multi-agency effort to improve outcomes for re-entry clients and decrease the intersection between the criminal justice system and homelessness. CCEH, OPM, and DOC conducted a data matching project that was released in 2019 and found that 20 percent of individuals in shelters had been incarcerated within the last three years.

Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system

Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access.

It intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

THURSDAY State Statistics on COVID-19 Cases in Lower Fairfield County

As of Thursday, the state reports 175 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, an adjustment of one fewer than the 176 the state reported the day before, according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

  • Mike Handler, New Canaan emergency management director, announced in an email Thursday that his town’s total number of cases is 162 (with 22 deaths), a figure much higher than the state is reporting on the same day.

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,182 cases (15 more than the 2,167 on Wednesday)
Norwalk — 1,365 (seven more than the 1,358 on Wednesday)
New Canaan — 127 (an adjustment to one fewer than the 128 on Wednesday, but see bulleted item above)
Greenwich — 610 (15 more than the 595 on Wednesday)
Westport — 224 (three more than the 221 on Wednesday)
Wilton — 140 (five more than the 135 on Wednesday)
Weston — 57 (one more than the 56 on Wednesday)
Ridgefield — 167 (an adjustment of one fewer than the 168 on Wednesday)
Fairfield — 335 (two more than the 333 on Wednesday)
Bridgeport — 1,577 (63 more than the 1,514 on Wednesday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,182), 2. Bridgeport (1,577), 3. Norwalk (1,365), 4. Danbury (1,295), 5. New Haven (1,304), 6. Waterbury (1,004),  7. Hartford (783), 8. Greenwich (610), 9. West Haven (607), 10. Hamden (498).

COVID-19 by town CT Thursday, April 23, 2020

Confirmed COVID-19 cases by municipality as of Thursday, April 23, 2020.

SW CT COVID-19 Thursday April 23, 2020

Closeup view of the map above, southwestern Connecticut COVID-19 confirmed cases by community as of Thursday, April 23, 2020

Governor Announces Members of Reopen Connecticut Advisory Group

Thursday, April 23 — An announcement from the Governor’s Office:

Gov. Ned Lamont today announced the members who will serve on the Reopen Connecticut Advisory Group.

The panel, made up of local health, business, workforce, and education experts organized by AdvanceCT, will consult with his administration and legislative leadership on the reopening of Connecticut’s economy and education system.

Each member was chosen because of either their expertise in the field of medicine and science; their experience as a member of Connecticut’s business community; their representation of the workforce; their proficiency regarding the needs of the state’s at-risk populations; or their leadership role within the education system.

Members of the advisory group, along with Lamont’s chief of staff, Paul Mounds Jr., will meet weekly with the leadership of the Connecticut General Assembly for advice and counsel, including Senate President Pro Tempore Martin Looney, Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff, Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, Speaker of the House Joe Aresimowicz, House Majority Leader Matt Ritter and House Minority Leader Themis Klarides.

“I’m as anxious to reopen our economy and get back to business as usual as everyone else, but if we don’t do this in a thoughtful way, all of our efforts to mitigate the spread of this virus to date will have been worthless,” Lamont said.

“The actions we’ve taken so far in Connecticut, while painstaking, have been helping to slow down its spread. The steadily slowing rate of hospitalizations shows that what we’ve done so far is having an impact, but we are not out of the woods yet.

“This group of medical professionals, local business representatives, professionals who work with our at-risk communities, and education officials will provide Connecticut with a valuable resource in our efforts to get our state moving again, while doing so in the safest and most sensible way possible.

“In addition, I appreciate the willingness of legislative leaders to participate with this advisory group because we need to have a unified approach, considering the significant impact this pandemic is having on our communities.”

The Reopen Connecticut Advisory Group is a separate entity from the multi-state, regional council that the State of Connecticut has joined with the governors of several other states from the Northeast.

The purpose of this localized group is to specifically focus on the needs of Connecticut’s towns, cities, business community, workforce, at-risk populations, and education system. The governor expects that many of the recommendations and advice developed by this advisory group, along with those of legislative leaders, will be useful in his administration’s ongoing discussions with the multi-state, regional council.

The members of the Reopen Connecticut Advisory Group include:

Main Advisory Group

  • (Co-Chair) Indra Nooyi: board co-chair of AdvanceCT; former CEO of PepsiCo
  • (Co-Chair) Dr. Albert Ko: professor of epidemiology and medicine and department chair at the Yale School of Public Health
  • Oni Chukwu: executive chairman of Aventri
  • Alex Karnal: partner and managing director of Deerfield; co-founder and board member of The Institute for Life Changing Medicines
  • Dr. Mehmood Khan: CEO and board member of Life Biosciences, Inc.
  • Dr. Harlan Krumholz: cardiologist and health care researcher at Yale University and Yale New Haven Hospital
  • Dr. Charles Lee: scientific director and professor at The Jackson Laboratory for Genomic Medicine
  • David Scheer: president of Scheer & Company, Inc.; board chair of Aegerion Pharmaceuticals

Business Committee

  • (Chair) Oni Chukwu: executive chairman of Aventri
  • Joe Brennan: president and CEO of the Connecticut Business and Industry Association
  • Rodney Butler: chairman of the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation
  • Peter Denious: president and CEO of AdvanceCT
  • Howard Hill: owner of Howard K. Hill Funeral Services
  • Roberta Hoskie: president and CEO of Outreach Realty Services
  • Steve Matiatos: president of the Connecticut Lodging Association
  • Dan Meiser: chairman of the Connecticut Restaurant Association
  • John Olsen: President Emeritus of the Connecticut AFL-CIO
  • Fran Pastore: president and CEO of the Women’s Business Development Council
  • Timothy Phelan: president of the Connecticut Retail Merchants Association
  • Meredith Reuben: CEO of EBP Supply Solutions
  • David Roche: president of the Connecticut Building Trades
  • Garrett Sheehan: president and CEO of the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce
  • Pedro Soto: president and CEO of Hygrade Precision Technologies

Community Committee

  • (Chair) Marcella Nunez Smith: director of Equity Research and Innovation at the Yale School of Medicine
  • Marie Allen: dxecutive director of the Southwestern Connecticut Agency on Aging and Independent Living
  • Dr. Ken Alleyne: vice chair of the Connecticut Health Foundation
  • Nora Duncan: state director of Connecticut AARP
  • Rochelle Palache: assistant district leader for SEIU, Local 32BJ
  • Daria Smith: executive director of the Connecticut State Independent Living Council

Education Committee

  • (Co-Chair) Rick Levin: former president of Yale University
  • (Co-Chair) Linda Lorimer: former vice president for global and strategic initiatives at Yale University
  • Rick Branson: executive director of the Connecticut Association of Independent Schools
  • Jan Hochadel: president of AFT Connecticut
  • Steve Kaplan: president of the University of New Haven
  • Alice Pritchard: phief of staff to the president of Connecticut State Colleges and Universities
  • Rachel Rubin: chief of staff to the president of the University of Connecticut
  • Jen Widness: president of the Connecticut Conference of Independent Colleges
  • Donald Williams, Jr.: executive director of the Connecticut Education Association

Governor Lamont’s Representatives

  • Paul Mounds: chief of staff for the Office of the Governor
  • Josh Geballe: chief operating officer for the Office of the Governor and commissioner of the Department of Administrative Services
  • Renée Coleman-Mitchell: commissioner of the Department of Public Health
  • Dr. Matthew Cartter: state epidemiologist for the Department of Public Health
  • Miguel Cardona: commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Education (Also co-chair of the Education Committee)
  • Beth Bye: commissioner of the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (Also member of the Education Committee)
  • Deidre Gifford: commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Social Services (Also member of the Community Committee)
  • Amy Porter: commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Aging and Disability Services (Also member of the Community Committee)
  • Jordan Scheff: commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Developmental Services (Also member of the Community Committee)
  • David Lehman: commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (Also member of the Business Committee)

Stevenson: Significant Coding Error Correction Suddenly Increases State Stats on COVID-19 in Lower Fairfield County for WEDNESDAY

Wednesday, April 22 — First Selectman Jayme Stevenson posted on her Facebook timeline:

“Good evening Darien Residents. This is an important message from your First Selectman, Jayme Stevenson.

“Our Local Health Department was notified today that there has been a coding error with positive cases from certain COVID-19 testing laboratories. This error has resulted in positive cases being significantly under reported to cities and towns.

“As a result, the total number of cases reported to the Town of Darien jumped from 153 on [Tuesday] April 21 to 176 on [Wednesday] April 22.

“Five of those cases remain under investigation for accuracy. Timely and accurate data is foundational to our COVID response and the state’s ability to ReOpen CT.”

Stevenson’s Tuesday number of 153 was more than the 151 the state released to the public, but she has said before that the information received by town officials is often a bit more than what the state reports to the public, apparently due to slower reporting to the state’s public list.

As of Wedneesday, the state reports 176 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, 25 more than the 151 the state reported the day before, according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,167 cases (100 more than the 2,067 on Tuesday)
Norwalk — 1,358 (394 more than the 964 on Tuesday)
New Canaan — 128 (13 more than the 115 on Tuesday)
Greenwich — 595 (30 more than the 565 on Tuesday)
Westport — 221 (23 more than the 198 on Tuesday)
Wilton — 135 (14 more than the 119 on Tuesday)
Weston — 56 (10 more than the 46 on Tuesday)
Ridgefield — 168 (22 more than the 146 on Tuesday)
Fairfield — 333 (27 more than the 306 on Tuesday)
Bridgeport — 1,514 (95 more than the 1,421 on Tuesday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,167), 2. Bridgeport (1,514), 3. Norwalk (1,358), 4. Danbury (1,297), 5. New Haven (1,253), 6. Waterbury (953),  7. Hartford (751), 8. West Haven (580), 9. Greenwich (565), 10. Hamden (476).

CT by town COVID-19 Wednesday April 22, 2020

Image from state government website

COVID-19 confirmed cases by city and town as of Wednesday, April 22

SW CT COVID-19 confirmed cases Wednesday April 22, 2020

Image from state government website

Distribution of COVID-19 confirmed cases in Southwest Connecticut as of Wednesday, April 22, 2020

WEDNESDAY: COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Wednesday, April 22 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Gov. Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 22, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 22,469 +2,109
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,544 +121
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,972 +23
Patients tested for COVID-19 69,918 +5,726

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 9,883 749 584
Hartford County 4,128 495 442
Litchfield County 722 20 63
Middlesex County 525 42 53
New Haven County 5,811 620 345
New London County 397 32 14
Tolland County 331 11 32
Windham County 122 3 4
Pending address validation 550 0 7
Total 22,469 1,972 1,544

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Governor Lamont signs 31st executive order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19

Governor Lamont today signed another executive order – the 31st since he enacted the emergency declarations – that builds upon his efforts to encourage mitigation strategies that slow down transmission of the virus. Executive Order No. 7DD enacts the following provisions:

  • Additions to the definition of telehealth provider: Modifies state statutes to add any licensed dentist, behavioral analyst, genetic counselor, music therapist, art therapist, and veterinarian to the definition of telehealth provider.
  • Flexibility for Medicaid-enrolled providers and in-network providers for commercial fully insured health insurance to perform telehealth through additional methods: Modifies Section 5 of Executive Order No. 7G regarding the delivery of telehealth with an updated definition and requirements for telehealth.
  • Additions to permissible out-of-state healthcare providers: Modifies state statutes to additionally allow the commissioner of the Department of Public Health to issue an order to suspend, for a period not to exceed sixty consecutive days, the requirements for licensure, certification, or registration for occupational therapists; alcohol and drug counselors; radiographers, radiologic technologists, radiologist assistants, and nuclear medicine technologists; dentists; dental hygienists; behavioral analysts; genetic counselors; music therapists; art therapists; dietician-nutritionists; and speech and language pathologists.
  • Participation in intern, resident physician, or United States Medical Officer candidate training programs prior to permit issuance: Modifies state statutes to allow a person to participate in an intern or resident physician program or United States Medical officer candidate training program prior to issuance of a permit by the Department of Public Health provided that the hospital administrator documents that the person has satisfied the requirements for such a permit set forth in the statute.
  • Participation in resident physician assistant program prior to permit issuance: Modifies state statutes to allow a person to participate in a resident physician assistant program in a short-term hospital that provides a postgraduate medical education program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, without a license or temporary permit or a training permit issued by the Department of Public Health, provided that the hospital administrator documents that the person is to be appointed a resident physician assistant in such hospital and has satisfied certain requirements.
  • Temporary suspension of physician assistant supervision restrictions: Modifies state statutes to suspend the supervision requirements for physician assistants authorized to practice in the State of Connecticut.
  • Temporary suspension of in-person supervision requirement for advanced practice registered nurses: Modifies state statutes to suspend the requirement that a physician, medically directing the prescriptive activity of an advanced practice registered nurse who is prescribing and administering medical therapeutics during surgery, must be physically present in the institution, clinic, or other setting where the surgery is being performed.
  • Provision of services by respiratory care therapist and respiratory care technician students: Modifies state statutes to allow a respiratory care therapist student or a respiratory care technician student to provide services except that the services are not required to be a component of such person’s course of study.
  • Suspension of continuing education requirement for health care providers: Suspends certain continuing education requirements for one year for occupations and professions with annual education requirements, and for other occupations and professions the continuing education completion period and reporting requirements are suspended for six months.
  • Modification of 36-month age limit for Birth-to-Three services: Modifies state statutes to authorize the commissioner of the Office of Early Childhood to temporarily expand the definition of “eligible children” to include children who are receiving Birth-to-Three intervention services but reach the age where they would no longer be eligible.
**DownloadGovernor Lamont’s Executive Order No. 7DD

Lamont administration initiates discussions with New York and New Jersey on a regional contract tracing strategy

The Lamont administration announced today that it has initiated discussions with the governors of New York and New Jersey regarding a regional contact tracing strategy. New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a partnership with former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg through the Bloomberg Philanthropies. Governor Lamont expressed the need for a regional approach concerning contact tracing that complements existing staff, volunteers, processes, and technology as all of the states’ residents are in contact with each other on a regular basis, especially commuters in and out of New York City.

Update on the processing of unemployment claims by the Connecticut Department of Labor

As of today, the Connecticut Department of Labor has processed more than 320,000 of the 397,000 unemployment claims it has received since March 13.

Prior to a software improvement that was implemented last week, the processing time was about six weeks. With the new technology enhancements, that processing time has been reduced to about three weeks, and the agency is on target to reduce that time further to one week by the close of this week. Benefits will be retroactive to the date a person needed to apply. Anyone who is filing for benefits is strongly encouraged to select direct deposit since this is the quickest method to receive the benefits.

Thousands of Connecticut residents using How We Feel app to provide health officials with critical data

To date, the recently launched How We Feel app has generated 32,429 users in Connecticut – up about 16,000 from yesterday alone. Residents in Hartford, New Haven, and Fairfield Counties make up about 80 percent of the respondents. Early data shows that the mean average of users in the state is 52, which is quite a bit higher than the national average of between 30 to 40.

The How We Feel app is an initiative to anonymously provide scientists with critical health information needed to understand the spread of COVID-19. Users self-report basic health information into the app once per day, and the data is anonymously provided to leading medical institutions so scientists and public health officials can better spot emerging outbreaks early, identify new populations who are at risk, and measure the efficacy of public health measures such as social distancing.

“We’re all looking for something we can do to stem the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, and this app provides an opportunity for everyone – regardless of whether you are currently sick or if you are in healthy condition – to share how you’re feeling to leading health professionals, so they can track the spread of this virus and quickly determine where a new outbreak may be occurring,” Governor Lamont said.

The app is available to download for free on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Users can also self-report their health information on the web at howwefeel.app.

For more information about how the app works, read the press release Governor Lamont issued earlier this week.

Connecticut receives $2 million federal grant for mental health services in response to pandemic

The State of Connecticut has been awarded a $2 million grant from the federal government to address behavioral health care needs of specific populations in the state that have been heavily impacted by the pandemic. The grant, awarded to the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, will support service needs over the next year and a half. Its primary focus is to address the needs of persons with severe mental illness, substance use disorders, co-occurring disorders, youth with severe emotional disturbances and their families, individuals with less severe mental health conditions, and healthcare practitioners.

The funding will be used by DMHAS to launch the Connecticut COVID-19 Behavioral Health Response and Assistance (Connecticut COBHRA) initiative. It will be a collaborative effort that includes the Department of Corrections (DOC) and the Department of Children and Families (DCF). The grant will support a number of activities focused on improving the health outcomes of those individuals affected by COVID-19 including:

  • Purchasing telehealth equipment for DMHAS providers and DOC health care practitioners;
  • Enhancing eight DMHAS-funded mobile crisis teams with additional clinicians;
  • Providing staffing to a new statewide call center for adult crisis calls at United Way 2-1-1; and
  • Expanding the DCF Family Based Recovery services for youth and their families.

The grant will also increase services for victims of intimate partner violence and support the behavioral health needs of health care practitioners. A final component of the grant will provide support to employee assistance programs at DMHAS-funded agencies.

“This grant award will provide needed support for the state’s efforts to address the mental health needs of those most affected by COVID-19,” Mental Health and Addiction Services Commissioner Miriam Delphin-Rittmon said. “The funding is vital as we face new challenges related to the coronavirus.”

“All families face challenges during these uncertain times in our communities,” Children and Families Commissioner Vannessa Dorantes said. “In particular, parents caring for infants and young children need our support and special attention. Family Based Recovery has been innovative in converting their intensive services to telemedicine and adapting to virtual services – ensuring children’s safety and allowing them to remain at home whenever possible. We look forward to our continued collaboration with Family Based Recovery and our partners at the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.”

“We are grateful to SAMHSA and DMHAS for federal Emergency COVID-19 funds that will enable the Department of Correction to expand the use of telemedicine and telemental health services,” Correction Commissioner Rollin Cook said. “The purchase of an estimated 30 additional devices will allow our health care providers to maintain behavioral health treatment care to the offender population.”

Governor Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system

Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access. It intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

TUESDAY State Statistics on COVID-19 Cases in Lower Fairfield County

Tuesday, April 21 — As of Tuesday, the state reports 151 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, two more than the day before, according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

  • First Selectman Jayme Stevenson tweeted:Second day in a row that the state has not reported any new COVID cases to the Town of Darien’s Local Health Director. Darien has 151 cases…state data at ct.gov/coronavirus is just catching up to our local records. No new cases reported since 4/18. #hope

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,067 cases (21 more than the 2,046 on Monday)
Norwalk — 964 (22 more than the 942 on Monday)
New Canaan — 115 (the same number as on on Monday; no new cases)
Greenwich — 565 (three more than the 562 on Monday)
Westport — 198 (one more than the 197 on Monday)
Wilton — 119 (four more than the 115 on Monday)
Weston — 46 (the same number as on Monday; no new cases)
Ridgefield — 146 (the same number as on Monday; no new cases)
Fairfield — 306 (six more than the 300 on Monday)
Bridgeport — 1,421 (75 more than the 1,356 on Monday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,046), 2. Bridgeport (1,356), 3. New Haven (1,177), 4.  Norwalk (942), 5.  5. Waterbury (907), 6. Danbury (842), 7. Hartford (724), 8. Greenwich (565), 9. West Haven (545), 10. Hamden (448).

CT COVID-19 April 21, 2020

Image from state government website

COVID-19 total known cases by municipality as of April 21, 2020.

COVID-19 by town SW CT Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Image from state government website

Closeup view of the map above, showing southwestern Connecticut cities and towns.

TUESDAY: COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Tuesday, April 21 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Governor Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 21, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 20,360 +545
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,423 +92
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,949 +30
Patients tested for COVID-19 64,192 +1,386

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 8,472 735 544
Hartford County 3,951 473 402
Litchfield County 643 23 59
Middlesex County 512 40 47
New Haven County 5,493 625 322
New London County 369 35 13
Tolland County 305 13 30
Windham County 112 5 2
Pending address validation 503 0 4
Total 20,360 1,949 1,423

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Governor Lamont signs 30th executive order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19

Governor Lamont today signed another executive order – the 30th since he enacted the emergency declarations – that builds upon his efforts to encourage mitigation strategies that slow down transmission of the virus. Executive Order No. 7CC enacts the following provisions:

  • Applicability of Executive Order No. 7S, Section 7 to additional critical and time-sensitive municipal fiscal actions: Expands Section 7 of Executive Order No. 7S, permitting a municipality’s legislative body and budget-making authority to jointly authorize certain actions by a majority vote of each body to include additional time sensitive and essential actions among which such bodies may authorize.
  • Clarification of time periods regarding suspension and modification of non-judicial tax sales pursuant to Executive Order No. 7S, Section 11: Clarifies the calculation of time frames to redeem certain interests in property after a municipality has sold the property to recoup unpaid taxes. Executive Order No. 7S extended those time frames.
  • Exclusion of federal stimulus payments in evaluating eligibility for state or local programs financed in whole or in part using state funds: Modifies state statutes to provide that individual stimulus payments under the federal CARES Act will not be counted as income or resources when determining eligibility for state benefits or services.
  • Alternative to physical presence in court for finding of irretrievable breakdown of marriage: Modifies state statutes requiring the physical presence in court of a party to a dissolution or legal separation prior to a finding that a marriage has broken down irretrievably to permit the court to accept not-in-person testimony from such parties sufficient to make such finding. However, this does not apply in any case where a restraining order or a protective order between the parties is in effect or an application for such an order is pending before the court.
  • Alternative to in-person waiver of right to file motion or petition for educational support: Modifies state statutes requiring a parent to be present in court for the court to make findings sufficient to accept the parent’s waiver of the right or file a motion or petition for educational support to provide that such a waiver may be accepted upon submission of proof deemed sufficient by the court that the parent fully understands the consequences of such a waiver. However, this does not apply in any case where a restraining order or a protective order between the parties is in effect or an application for such an order is pending before the court.
  • Alternative to physical appearance of petitioner regarding decree of dissolution after entry of decree of legal separation: Modifies state statutes requiring the presence of the party seeking a decree dissolving a marriage at the time of the entry of such decree and permits the court to make such entry without requiring the presence of the party. However, in any case where a restraining order or a protective order between the parties is in effect or an application for such an order is pending before the court, the presence of the party shall be required.
  • Alternative to in-court canvas prior to entrance of final agreement: Modifies state statutes requiring the court to inquire into the financial resources and actual needs of the spouses and their respective fitness to have physical custody or rights of visitation with any minor child prior to entry of a final order of dissolution or approval of a final agreement and permits the court to satisfy the inquiry requirement. However, this does not apply in any case in which a restraining order or a protective order between the parties is in effect or an application for such an order is pending before the court.
  • Alternative to physical presence when findings on the record required: Whenever applicable law requires the court to make a specific finding on the record in a proceeding, that requirement is satisfied if the court’s written judgement, order, or memorandum of decision includes such finding except in any case where a restraining order or protective order between the parties is in effect or an application for such an order is pending before the court.
  • Revised financial protections for people covered by insurance who receive out-of-network health care services during the public health emergency: Repeals Sections 2(a) and 2(b) of Executive Order No. 7U.

Governor Lamont announces state seeking proposals from organizations to scale-up Connecticut’s testing capacity

Governor Lamont today announced that the State of Connecticut today issued an RFP seeking organizations that want to partner with the state in its efforts to significantly scale-up its daily COVID-19 testing capacity as part of its efforts to reopen the state’s economy.

In addition to the current testing of patients and front line workers who are currently exhibiting symptoms of the virus, the state is planning to significantly build out its capacity to test people who are not exhibiting any symptoms, including front line essential workers, and test them regularly, knowing that COVID-19 can be transmitted before people develop symptoms. To do this, the Lamont administration is looking for proposals from organizations that will support sample collection efforts, particularly in urban and underserved communities where significant impacts of COVID-19 have been prevalent, in addition to proposals from CLIA-certified testing labs.

“The sooner we can identify people with the infection, the sooner they can self-isolate and we can trace their contacts,” Governor Lamont said. “That’s how we will drive infection rates down and prevent rebounds in infection rates as we begin to reopen.”

Governor Lamont recently issued executive orders under the state of emergency that have suspended many of the state contracting requirements and will allow the administration to expedite the process. Proposals will be accepted and awarded on a rolling basis, ensuring that testing capacity can be rapidly built up to support the state’s reopening plans.

To read the RFP, click here.

Governor Lamont announces payment relief for student loan borrowers

Governor Ned Lamont and Banking Commissioner Jorge Perez, in collaboration with other states, today announced that the State of Connecticut has secured relief options with many private student loan servicers whose borrowers are not covered by the recently adopted federal CARES Act. This new initiative will benefit Connecticut residents with privately held student loans.

While the CARES Act provided relief for students with federal loans, it did not address millions of student loan borrowers with federal loans that are not owned by the U.S. Government, as well as loans made by private lenders.

“So many of our residents are facing unprecedented financial hardship, and our young people are burdened with additional student loan debt,” Governor Lamont said. “I applaud the Banking Department and the student loan servicers for launching this initiative to provide much needed relief to the young people of our state who are not covered by the CARES Act, as well as their families.”

“Student loan borrowers, regardless of whether or not they are federally guaranteed, who are having trouble making their payments should immediately reach out to their servicers to discuss what options best suit their needs,” Commissioner Perez said. “I’m pleased that we were able to work with our student loan servicers as well as other states to bring this initiative to the people of Connecticut.”

Under this new initiative, Connecticut residents with commercially owned Federal Family Education Loan Programs or privately held student loans who are struggling to make their payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be eligible for expanded relief.  Borrowers in need of assistance should immediately contact their student loan servicer to identify the options that are appropriate to their circumstances. Relief options through the servicers listed below include:

  • Providing a minimum of 90 days of forbearance;
  • Waiving late payment fees;
  • Ensuring that no borrower is subject to negative credit reporting;
  • Ceasing debt collection lawsuits for 90 days; and
  • Working with borrower to enroll them in other borrower assistance programs, such as income based repayment.

Additionally, if regulated student loan servicers are limited in their ability to take these actions due to investor restrictions or contractual obligations, servicers should instead proactively work with loan holders whenever possible to relax those restrictions or obligations. The Department of Banking encourages prudent and reasonable actions taken to support relief for borrowers during the pandemic.

To determine the types of federal loans residents have and who their servicers are, borrowers can visit the U.S. Department of Education’s National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS) or call the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-433-3243 or 1-800-730-8913 (TDD). Borrowers with private student loans can check the contact information on their monthly billing statements.

If a borrower is experiencing trouble with their student loan servicer, they are encouraged to ask to speak to a supervisor. If assistance is still needed, they can contact the following and file a complaint:

Private student loan servicers providing relief under this initiative include:

  • Aspire Resources, Inc.
  • College Ave Student Loan Servicing, LLC
  • Earnest Operations
  • Edfinancial
  • Kentucky Higher Education Student Loan Corporation
  • Lendkey Technologies, Inc.
  • MOHELA
  • Navient
  • Nelnet
  • SoFi Lending Corp.
  • Tuition Options
  • United Guaranty Services, Inc.
  • Upstart Network, Inc.
  • Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority
  • Vermont Student Assistance Corporation

Additional private student loan servicers may be added. An up-to-date list will be maintained on the Connecticut Department of Banking’s website at www.ct.gov/dob.

States joining this initiative include California, Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.

Life insurers warned not to ask applicants for their COVID-19 health history

Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Andrew N. Mais is warning all life insurers doing business in Connecticut to refrain from asking applicants about exposure to the novel coronavirus.

In a department notice issued by the Connecticut Insurance Department to all insurance companies that offer life insurance coverage in Connecticut, the state agency is advising that any life insurance application form filed for review should not include questions related to COVID-19, including questions about being quarantined. Any life insurance application form filing that contains such questions will not be approved.

“The state of emergency has already placed undue hardship on families and businesses during this pandemic,” Commissioner Mais said. “Families need the security that life insurance brings and any new barriers to coverage must be avoided. Some carriers may want to know if people applying for coverage have self-isolated due to symptoms, or been tested for the disease or diagnosed with it. That won’t be allowed in Connecticut.”

Consumers, insurers and brokers with questions can contact the department directly by email at cid.pc@ct.gov or by calling the Insurance Department at 1-800-203-3447 or 860-297-3900.

Connecticut insurance commissioner applauds CIGNA and New York Life for creating foundation benefitting COVID-19 health care workers and volunteers

Connecticut Insurance Commissioner Andrew N. Mais is commending CIGNA and New York Life for their creation of the Brave of Heart Fund to benefit the bereaved families of COVID-19 front line health care workers and volunteers.

“Grieving families need so much support,” Commissioner Mais said. “CIGNA and New York Life have truly answered the call and responded to help protect the financial security of families affected by our current crisis.”

More information on the Brave of Heart Fund can be found at www.braveofheartfund.com.

Governor Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system

Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access. It intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

Governor: Five Times Current COVID-19 Testing Levels Coming in CT

Tuesday, April 21 — An announcement from the Governor’s Office:

Gov. Ned Lamont today announced that a new initiative between Hartford HealthCare and Quest Diagnostics, with support from the State of Connecticut, will significantly increase the capacity of COVID-19 testing in the state from 500 tests per day to 2,500.

Hartford HealthCare also plans to increase capacity at existing testing locations in Norwich, Hartford, Torrington, Bridgeport, and New Britain, and is actively investigating new ways to bring testing to traditionally underserved communities. Lamont said the state is endorsing the plan and will provide support wherever it is needed.

Editor’s note: The announcement did not say when this new testing is expected to start.

MONDAY State Statistics on COVID-19 Cases in Lower Fairfield County

Monday, April 20 — As of Monday, the state reports 149 Darienites were identified with COVID-19, 10 more than the day before and the day before that, according to information released by state authorities. (Reminders: Many people are thought to have the COVID-19 virus who aren’t identified; the state says “all figures are preliminary and subject to change.”)

Here’s the number of identified cases in nearby communities, according to the state government Web page for this day’s Coronavirus statistics:

Stamford — 2,046 cases (298 more than the 1,758 on Sunday)
Norwalk — 942 (84 more than the 858 on Sunday)
New Canaan — 115 (13 more than the 102 on Sunday)
Greenwich — 562 (190 more than the 372 on Sunday)
Westport — 197 (13 more than the 184 on Sunday)
Wilton — 115 (12 more than the 103 on Sunday)
Weston — 46 (two more than the 44 on Sunday)
Ridgefield — 146 (nine more than the 137 on Sunday)
Fairfield — 300 (39 more than the 261 on Sunday)
Bridgeport — 1,356 (126 more than the 1,230 on Sunday)

TEN WORST HIT CONNECTICUT MUNICIPALITIES (with total cases): 1. Stamford (2,046), 2. Bridgeport (1,230), 3. New Haven (1,134), 4.  Norwalk (942), 5.  5. Waterbury (872), 6. Danbury (836), 7. Hartford (704), 8. Greenwich (562), 9. West Haven (499), 10. Hamden (424).

MONDAY: COVID-19 Briefing by Gov. Lamont

Monday, April 20 — As the State of Connecticut continues taking actions in response to the global spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Governor Ned Lamont provided the following updates as of 7 p.m. on Monday, April 20, 2020:

Data updates on testing in Connecticut

The following is a summary of the day-to-day newly reported data on cases, deaths, and tests in Connecticut. It is important to note that these newly reported updates include data that occurred over the last several days to a week. All data in this report are preliminary, and data for previous dates will be updated as new reports are received and data errors are corrected.

Overall Summary Statewide Total Change Since Yesterday
Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases 19,815 +1,853
COVID-19-Associated Deaths 1,331 +204
Patients Currently Hospitalized with COVID-19 1,919 +18
Patients tested for COVID-19 62,806 +3,047

County-by-county breakdown:

County Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Cases Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19 Hospitalizations Laboratory-Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Deaths
Fairfield County 8,320 733 512
Hartford County 3,823 455 369
Litchfield County 639 23 58
Middlesex County 484 36 45
New Haven County 5,272 626 301
New London County 356 29 13
Tolland County 299 13 27
Windham County 108 4 2
Pending address validation 514 0 4
Total 19,815 1,919 1,331

For several additional graphs and tables containing more data, including a list of cases in every municipality, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

SNAP participants receive second round of emergency food benefits today

The Connecticut Department of Social Services today announced that the second round of emergency food benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) were delivered to nearly 108,000 households today.

Authorized by the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020, the extra food benefits are being distributed to those households that are not currently receiving the maximum SNAP benefits allowed for their household size.

This means that all households in SNAP are receiving the maximum food benefit allowable for their household size, even if they aren’t usually eligible for the maximum benefit.

The first round of emergency SNAP benefits were delivered to households on April 9. For more information, visit www.ct.gov/snap.

Connecticut Office of the Arts announces grants available for Connecticut artists impacted by pandemic

Recognizing that artists provide inspiration, connection, and education, particularly at times when the creative sector is needed most, the Connecticut Office of the Arts – a state office housed within the Department of Economic and Community Development – today announced that two grant programs have been created to help local artists negatively impacted by COVID-19:

  • The Connecticut Artists Relief Grant program will provide $500 grants to over 100 individual artists and teaching artists who live in the state and whose creative practices and income are being adversely impacted by the safety measures put into place to prevent the spread of the virus. The grant is partly funded by the New England Foundation for the Arts.
  • The Connecticut Artists Respond Grant program helps artists translate and present their art virtually. Individual or collaborative artists who create or have created projects that respond to the needs of the times by presenting art activities, classes, or other creative experiences online at no cost to the public will be eligible for $1,000 or $2,000, respectively.

Applications will be accepted for both programs through May 4, 2020. For specific questions, artists should contact Tamara Dimitri at tamara.dimitri@ct.gov and teaching artists should contact Bonnie Koba at bonnie.koba@ct.gov.

Governor Lamont encourages residents to sign up for the state’s CTAlert notification system

Governor Lamont is encouraging Connecticut residents to sign up for CTAlert, the state’s emergency alert system, which provides text message notifications to users. To subscribe, text the keyword COVIDCT to 888-777.

Providing information to Connecticut residents

For the most up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including an FAQ and other guidance and resources, residents are encouraged to visit ct.gov/coronavirus.

Individuals who have general questions that are not answered on the website can also call 2-1-1 for assistance. The hotline is available 24 hours a day and has multilingual assistance and TDD/TTY access.

It intended to be used by individuals who are not experiencing symptoms but may have general questions related to COVID-19. Anyone experiencing symptoms is strongly urged to contact their medical provider.

Metro-North: Riders Need Masks in New York State

Monday, April 20 — An announcement from Metro-North:

Metro-North employees and customers traveling on Metro-North Railroad in New York state are now required to wear face masks or coverings.

This change is pursuant to the April 15 Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo executive order requiring anyone traveling in public who cannot social distance to wear a face covering unless they cannot medically tolerate it. Connecticut customers are also urged to wear a face covering during this time.

Please remember to practice social distancing in stations and on platforms, use all open doors to board your train, and sit as far as possible from other customers after boarding the train.  This change will help to ensure a safe environment for essential workers riding with us.

Please stay home and only travel if you absolutely need to. Train service is for essential personnel only.

Here’s Where This Article’s Illustration Comes from:

Monday, April 20 — This Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tweet:

CDC Tweet where the illustration comes from

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