HARTFORD, CT) – 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 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25, 2020:
Data updates on testing in Connecticut
Since yesterday’s update, an additional 257 Connecticut residents have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 875. To date, more than 5,898 tests have been conducted in Connecticut among both state and private laboratories. Approximately 113 people have been hospitalized and there have been another 7 fatalities, bringing the total number of fatalities due to complications of COVID-19 to 19.
A county-by-county breakdown includes:
|County||Laboratory Confirmed Cases||Hospitalized Cases||Deaths|
|New Haven County||127||28||2|
|New London County||9||2||0|
For several additional charts and tables containing more data groups, including a town-by-town breakdown of positive cases in each municipality and a breakdown of cases and deaths among age groups, visit ct.gov/coronavirus.
Governor Lamont signs fourteenth executive order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19
Governor Lamont today signed another executive order – the fourteenth since he enacted the emergency declarations – that builds upon his efforts to encourage mitigation strategies that slow down transmission of the virus.
Governor Lamont’s Executive Order No. 7M enacts the following provisions:
- Authorizing state agencies to extend statutory regulatory administrative deadlines by 90 days: The order allows flexibility in meeting statutory deadlines for filings, decisions, and notice in the many permitting and other applications and administrative hearings under the purview of state agencies, and requires agencies to post any changes on their web sites.
- Suspension of mandatory statutory filing requirements for Freedom of Information Act appeals and decisions by the Freedom of Information Commission: As many state offices transition to a telework environment, including the staff at the Freedom of Information Commission, this order suspends the time requirements for filing an appeal with the commission, and the requirement that the commission must hear and decide an appeal within one year after the filing of such appeal.
- Tolling of time periods for Department of Transportation final determinations on permits: As the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) shifts a significant portion of its workforce to a teleworking situation, this order suspends the 90-day requirement for approving encroachment permits required for work in the “right of way” along Connecticut state roads and highways. This will avoid automatic approval of encroachment permits due to delays in receiving mail or responding to requests as staff transitions to a telework environment, and allow them to review all permit requests to ensure the activity will not pose a safety risk to the traveling public.
|**Download: Governor Lamont’s Executive Order No. 7M|
Mobile field hospital launching at Danbury Hospital
In coordination with the Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH), the Governor’s Foot and Horse Guard Units today are deploying a mobile field hospital on the grounds of Danbury Hospital that is anticipated to be up and running by Thursday. It is identical to the mobile field hospital that was deployed yesterday on the grounds of Saint Francis Hospital in Hartford. A third mobile field hospital is anticipated to be deployed on the grounds of Middlesex Hospital in Middletown in the coming days.
The Ottilie W. Lundgren Memorial Field Hospital, under the authority of DPH, is a state-of-the-art mobile field hospital designed to support the state’s health care system in response to significant emergencies. It is deployable in several parts as a flexible configuration 25-bed units that operate jointly or independently to provide triage and treatment anywhere in the state in the event of a mass casualty. It can also support an acute care hospital after a catastrophic structural or mechanical failure. The hospital assembles in hours and can be ready to triage and treat hundreds of patients during any public health emergency. It was named in 2006 in honor of a Connecticut woman who died from inhalational anthrax in 2001.
Governor Lamont announces launch of the Connecticut Recovery Bridge Loan Program to help small businesses and nonprofits
During his news briefing this afternoon, Governor Lamont today announced that his administration will soon launch a zero-interest loan program to help Connecticut small businesses and nonprofits that have been impacted by COVID-19.
The Connecticut Recovery Bridge Loan Program will be administered by the Department of Economic and Community Development and will make $25 million available to businesses and nonprofits in the state that have fewer than 100 employees. Additional eligibility information and guidance on the application process will be published soon at ct.gov/coronavirus.
Office of Health Strategy further streamlines approval and licensure process for the state’s hospitals
On the heels of Governor Lamont’s call for hospitals statewide to expand their bed capacity, and in anticipation of an increasing number of COVID-19 patients requiring hospitalization, the Connecticut Office of Healthcare Strategy (OHS) today issued an order further streamlining the approval and licensure process for the state’s hospitals. Effective immediately, hospitals in Connecticut are required to simply complete a notification form, rather than apply for a Certificate of Need waiver.
The intent is to accelerate implementation of emergency planning to address the COVID-19 crisis, provide necessary facilities to meet urgent demand, and still provide OHS a mechanism to track changes.
To read the OHS order issued today, click here.
2-1-1 hotline has handled more than 8,000 live-answer phone calls from Connecticut residents to date
Since launching its special COVID-19 hotline on March 7, United Way 2-1-1 of Connecticut has taken 8,035 live-answer phone calls providing residents with general information regarding the virus, including 674 callers yesterday alone. To date, the hotline’s pre-recorded messages have been accessed 14,177 times.
Governor Lamont dispels rumors regarding state’s response to COVID-19
The Connecticut Joint Information Center, Untied Way 2-1-1 of Connecticut, and state and local police departments continue receiving phone calls and have seen social media posts with false claims about Connecticut’s borders being ordered to shut down, roads being closed, and a curfew being put into place. Governor Lamont wants to assure Connecticut residents that these rumors are not true.
The governor also wants to remind residents that there is no need to rush to the grocery store to buy items in bulk. Roads in Connecticut will continue to remain open for these necessary functions, and grocery stores will continue providing services to customers.
Connecticut Red Cross asks blood donors to make an appointment to give during this critical time
Thousands of Red Cross blood drives around the country have been canceled because of the need to reduce gatherings of large groups of people in order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. This has resulted in a significantly reduced amount of blood donations than the organization typically receives.
Adjusting to the situation, the Red Cross of Connecticut has set up a process for people to call ahead and make an appointment to donate blood, and proper social distancing can be practiced.
The Connecticut State Police is partnering with the Red Cross of Connecticut and will be holding a blood drive at the Police Academy in Meriden on Thursday, March 26, however it is already fully booked for appointments. A second blood drive at the Police Academy is scheduled for Wednesday, April 1, and there remains several openings for blood donors to sign up. Several other appointment-only blood drives are being organized at locations throughout Connecticut.
Those who would like to give should visit www.redcrossblood.org to make an appointment.
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.