Conn. reports highest infection rate since June 1, could revert back to Phase 2: Lamont

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HARTFORD, CT (1010 WINS) -- Connecticut reported its highest COVID-19 infection rate since the beginning of June on Thursday, prompting Gov. Ned Lamont to warn that the state could soon roll back its reopening.

Of the 21,739 COVID-19 test results that came back in the state on Wednesday, 1,319, or 6.1 percent, were positive, Lamont said at a news briefing.

The last time Connecticut reported a positivity rate that high was June 1, he noted. The state also reported five new COVID-19 fatalities on Thursday, pushing its death toll to 4,609.

“I look hard to find a silver lining, and I can’t find it in these numbers, except perhaps the fact that we have done a lot of testing,” the governor said. “There’s no good news in those numbers, and it reflects what’s going on in our region."

COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state have also continued to “creep up,” he said. As of Wednesday, 321 people were hospitalized with COVID-19, up by 12 from Tuesday.

Connecticut is “getting close” to reverting back to Phase 2, of its reopening, Lamont said. The state moved from Phase 2 to Phase 3, which included reopening indoor performance venues and increasing some indoor capacity limits, on Oct. 8.

“I’ve always said I didn’t have an absolute number in mind, but I also worried about the pace,” he said. “And let’s face it, if this six is for real, and not an aberration, [if] it looks like it’s part of a trend, this is something we’ve got to take seriously.”

Earlier this month, Lamont said towns and cities that had been designated “Red Alert” areas based on their daily COVID-19 case counts had the option of reverting back to Phase 2.

On Thursday, the governor said “Orange Alert” areas could also start exercising that option.

Thirty towns and cities are currently at “Red Alert,” status, up from 19, he said. A full list of those areas is available on the state's website.