Yale Medicine doctor weighs in as CT’s daily COVID positivity rate hits new record high

Coronavirus

Conn. (WTNH) — The state’s new COVID-19 infection rate record that was set on Tuesday was surpassed on Wednesday and again on Thursday, when Connecticut’s daily positivity rate rose above 20%.

The positivity rate is one metric and it is an important one. Along with that, there is another factor health experts are keeping their eye on.

Throughout this pandemic, Governor Ned Lamont has stressed the importance of hospitalizations as another key metric. That number is also on the rise, with 1,151 patients hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Thursday.

News 8 asked an infectious disease doctor at Yale Medicine what he would do moving forward.

The video below is from Dec. 30

“I would suggest to the governor to certainly reenact an indoor mask mandate which we know can be effective in preventing the spread of COVID,” said Dr. Scott Roberts. “I think the current trends we’re seeing are very worrisome. Connecticut as a state is hitting records by the day, and the trajectory looks very worrisome, and we’re really going up and up. I think I’m particularly concerned over the next six to eight weeks that this will only continue to increase.”

Roberts said in other countries that have dealt with the omicron variant a little longer than the U.S. has, they are seeing the number of cases and hospitalizations rise. He said we need to be prepared.

“We as a health care system and as a state really need to be prepared to face increased cases, increased hospitalizations in the coming weeks,” Roberts said.

In regards to gatherings, Roberts said if people take at-home rapid tests before the gathering, avoid risky scenarios beforehand and make sure everybody’s vaccinated, it can definitely be safer.

When discussing students heading back to class next week, New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker wants to remind parents not to send children to school if they are sick or have tested positive for COVID. While the number of COVID cases has spiked, there is no plan at this time for New Haven schools to return to remote learning.

Meanwhile, U.S. Education Secretary Dr. Migeul Cardona is also weighing in on this issue. He says while testing is one way to ensure safety, other measures should also be taken to keep schools open. According to Dr. Cardona, the return from holiday break will create a pediatric COVID hospitalization surge.

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