CT Dept. of Public Health ‘strongly recommends’ residents over the age of 2 wear masks indoors

Coronavirus

Conn. (WTNH) — The Connecticut Department of Public Health now “strongly recommends” anyone over the age of two wear a mask indoors regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.

CDC classified Hartford, New London, New Haven, Fairfield, Tolland, Windham, and Middlesex counties as areas with “substantial” COVID-19 community spread.

RELATED: CDC classifies seven Connecticut counties as areas with substantial COVID-19 community transmission

Substantial community transmission is classified by the CDC as 50-99 cumulative cases per 100,000 people in the past seven days.

“If everyone pulls their weight with the pandemic, I think we will be in much better shape than many other states and counties in the country by the time school season starts,” said Dr. Sharon Stoll, Neuroimmunologist, Yale Medicine.

“While Litchfield county does not currently meet the threshold, the likelihood is high that they will soon meet the threshold, and therefore universal masking indoors is an important precaution,” according to the Department of Public Health.

News 8’s Chief Political Correspondent Jodi Latina was in Groton Monday afternoon where Governor Ned Lamont weighed in on the COVID situation and its impact on the state.

He says he’s taking a wait-and-see tone about a lot of the COVID sector rules. However, he will make a statewide statement when it comes to masks in schools.

Nearly the entire state is under a recommendation to mask up indoors regardless of vaccination status.

At an event at the Navy sub museum in Groton, Gov. Lamont said 75 percent of our state is vaccinated, which is helping. But he is concerned about the Delta variant spread.

Lamont is not going to mandate changes to travel, dining at restaurants, and is still undecided on school mask mandates, but he did say he’s taking into account what Massachusetts has done – only having those under the age of 12 mask-up because the vaccine is not available to them yet.

Gov. Lamont explained, “The most important thing is making sure our kids get back to school safely. I want these kids in person – in school. I worry there are going to be a lot of these two-week quarantines and ball teams that shut down so that’s a real priority to make sure our schools stay open.”

Acting State Dept. of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Diedre Gifford says there is a silver lining: there’s an uptick in people getting vaccinated, which is helping keep the delta variant at bay.

“We know there are some employer mandates, we know there are some college and university mandates, and this news about delta is concerning to people, and so for a lot of reasons people are starting to go back and get vaccinated which is terrific because that’s our way past and through this delta variant,” Dr. Gifford said.

She also spoke about COVID booster shot. Right now, the discussion is centered on those at high risk and the elderly. Gifford says if federal guidance requires a booster down the road there is ample supply.

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