CONNECTICUT — As coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations have increased in the past month, state officials issued a new public health advisory Thursday night.
"DPH Acting Commissioner Deidre S. Gifford ... is issuing an advisory for all Connecticut residents to stay home between the hours of 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. in order to reduce the risk of further viral transmission," the state Department of Public Health said in a statement.
The advisory, which is a recommendation and not a mandate, goes into effect at midnight. It applies to every Connecticut resident, except essential workers who have to leave home to get to their jobs and anyone who must leave their home on an emergency basis to seek medical care or purchase medical supplies or groceries.
"CT DPH recommends all CT residents limit any non-essential trips outside the home between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.," the health department said.
A few months ago, Connecticut's positive coronavirus test rate was the lowest in the nation and was routinely under 1 percent daily. But since Sept. 20, new cases over a 14-day period has increased nearly threefold, with 6,895 new cases reported October 18–November 1, compared to 2,537 cases reported September 20–October 4, health officials said.
The average daily case rate for COVID-19 climbed during the same period from 5.1 per 100,000 people to 14 per 100,000 people. In addition, at least 70 percent of Connecticut’s population now lives in either a red alert or orange alert community for COVID-19 infection, health officials said.
Hospitalizations for COVID-19 have increased from 68 on Sept. 20 to 329 on Oct. 29, representing an increase of 483 percent, officials said.
Over the past 24 hours, 1,175 new coronavirus cases were reported, along with 11 deaths and six more hospitalizations.
These are the new recommendations included in the advisory:
1. Those over age 60 and anyone with a chronic disease or obesity who are at higher risk for complications of COVID-19 should take extra precautions and limit nonessential trips outside your home;
2. Employers allow work-from-home as much as possible;
3. Nonessential social or community gatherings of any size for any reason (parties, community meetings, celebrations or other social events) end by 9:30 p.m. or otherwise be canceled or postponed;
4. Everyone maintains at least a 6-foot distance from those who do not live with you;
5. Everyone wears a mask whenever you leave home and wear a mask inside your home if someone from outside your household is visiting;
6. Everyone clean their hands frequently using soap and water, hand sanitizer, or isopropyl alcohol wipes. Washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds works best. Avoid touching your face; and
7. Families and loved ones should limit visitation to long-term care facilities.
"This Public Health Advisory shall remain in effect until COVID-19 disease trends move in a more positive direction statewide and in accordance with future governor executive orders or commissioner orders as needed," officials said.
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