coronavirus in connecticut

Acting DPH Commissioner Talks Booster Shots, Mask Mandates

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Gov. Ned Lamont announced the state would put in place federal recommendations for a third booster shot. What else is on the horizon?

“It’s a fairly narrow list of individuals who need the third dose at this point in time,” Acting Public health Commissioner Deidre Gifford said. 

Gifford says it includes people who have had a solid organ transplant or are on high doses of medication that cause their immune system not to work. 

“You don’t need a doctor's prescription. You don’t need a recommendation or referral,” she said. 

The number of people getting vaccinated in Connecticut is increasing, according to Gifford. 

“Some employers have started to mandate vaccination as a condition of employment,” Gifford said. 

Gifford says the increase in vaccinations has shown up in the data for the last five weeks. 

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“We don’t know for sure why that is, but we think it’s a combination of people see the delta variant and how contagious it is and they want to get protected,” she said. 

Colleges and universities are requiring vaccinations for students returning to campus. 

Two weeks before the start of school, the governor is back from vacation, but there’s no news about whether a statewide mandate for school children will continue. 

“Our top priority is for the kids to be back in school full-time and to have a safe start to the year,” Gifford said.  

Last week, some local officials called on Lamont to institute a statewide mask mandate. 

“The solution is really not 169 small solutions, it’s gotta be one big solution,” East Windsor First Selectman Jason Bowzsa said last week. 

But Lamont and his administration has resisted.

“We’re watching our numbers closely. We’re talking to our local partners and I’ll be speaking to the governor later today so I think right now the governor has said municipalities that are seeing higher rates should go ahead and do that indoor mask mandate,” she said.

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