NORWALK, Conn. – COVID-19 cases continue to increase in Norwalk, with 49 new cases reported Friday. Norwalk Public Schools reported 11 new cases at 5 p.m. Friday, cases that developed over the previous 24 hours. Those are in addition to cases that prompted Brien McMahon High School to go on remote learning for the day.
NPS reports, “Only two of the identified cases involve individuals who have recently been present on a school campus. However, exposure outside our buildings do have an impact on our schools. Over 60 students and staff members have been directed to quarantine based on these confirmed cases throughout the district.”
Mayor Harry Rilling’s Thursday update said there were seven additional cases and the City urged everyone to get tested.
“The City has partnered with the Day Street Community Health Center, the Southwest Community Health Center, and Griffin Hospital to provide drive-thru COVID-19 testing this weekend in Norwalk,” the update said. “Free testing will be available on Saturday, October 17, at the Stepping Stones Museum Parking Lot, 303 West Avenue, from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Sunday, October 18, at the Norwalk Community College Parking Lot, 188 Richards Avenue, from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. and Sunday, October 18, at the Stepping Stones Museum Parking Lot, 303 West Avenue, from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. No appointment, insurance, symptoms, or doctor’s note is needed to get tested.”
“We are seeing recent positive COVID-19 cases across virtually every zip code in Norwalk. The uptick in cases is not specific to one incident or isolated in one area. The more we test the more we can control the spread of the virus so we are expanding testing options,” Rilling is quoted as saying.
Rilling’s Friday update marks additional surge: the 49 new cases bring the total to 2,451.
“This is obviously a large jump in cases from yesterday,” Rilling is quoted as saying. “Please remember that test results can take a few days to be reported and uploaded into the state’s surveillance system but what we are seeing indicates there is more spread happening in Norwalk. Now is not a time to panic, but a time to double down on our testing and prevention efforts and remain vigilant.”
Contact and exposure tracing has been completed for all of NPS’ known cases, meaning that anyone known to have been exposed to a confirmed positive case has already been contacted, NPS said in its Friday evening email.
“We are awaiting information on results from additional tests that we know people have taken,” NPS said.
“At least six confirmed cases involve members of the Brien McMahon High School and Center for Global Studies school communities. These are not exposures that occurred at school. Contact tracing indicates that they appear to be connected to weekend social gatherings and a non-school related scavenger hunt that took place during the week.,” NPS said.
Both McMahon and the Center for Global Studies were on full remote learning Friday, and may stay shut Monday. The decision will be made over the weekend and meanwhile, “All extracurricular activities, athletics and music have been canceled for BMHS and CGS students” through Sunday.
“While Connecticut has been a model for other states in mitigating the spread of COVID-19, we know that the threat from COVID-19 will not go away easily,” the email said.
The trend since Oct. 1:
- 5 new cases, Thursday, Oct. 1
- 8 new cases, Friday, Oct. 2
- 2 new cases, Saturday, Oct. 3
- 12 new cases, Sunday, Oct. 4; “Nine of the cases are recent, while three cases are from the previous week and reflect ongoing data analysis”
- 11 new cases, Monday, Oct. 5
- 10 new cases, Tuesday, Oct. 6
- 5 new cases, Wednesday, Oct. 7
- 14 new cases, Thursday, Oct. 8
- 10 new cases, Friday, Oct. 9
- 8 new cases, Saturday, Oct. 10
- 28 new cases, Sunday, Oct. 11
- 10 new cases, Monday, Oct. 12
- 19 new cases, Tuesday, Oct. 13
- 2 new cases, Wednesday, Oct. 14
- 7 new cases, Thursday, Oct. 15
- 49 new cases, Friday, Oct. 16
The Norwalk Health Department tracks daily positive COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population on a 7- and 14-day average in the city, Rilling’s update said.
- From Sept. 27 to Oct. 10, the stat was 2.7 (cases per 100,000 residents)
- From Oct. 1-14, a two-week average, the stat was 13.3 (cases per 100,000 residents)
- From Oct. 8-14, a 7-day average, the stat was 17.2 (cases per 100,000 residents)
This analysis allows for standard comparisons between communities.
“Please consider getting tested this weekend and continue following public health guidelines,” Rilling is quoted as saying. “It is critically important that residents always wear face coverings, socially distance, wash their hands often, and stay home if they are not feeling well. These are known ways to help us slow the spread of this virus.”