coronavirus in connecticut

Governor Provides More Details About Tentative Phase 1B, 1C Vaccine Distribution Following CDC Recommendations

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More details have been released regarding tentative phase 1B and 1C vaccine distribution in Connecticut.

This comes after a federal advisory panel recommended people 75 and over and essential workers like firefighters, teachers and grocery store workers be put next in line for COVID shots.

Governor Ned Lamont said he hopes to have all people in phase 1A vaccinated with both doses by the end of January. He also hopes to start vaccinating residents in phase 1B at that time.

In phase 1B, frontline essential workers and adults over the age of 75 could receive the vaccine.

As people begin to roll up their sleeves to get first phase doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, the state's advisory group is looking at who should get it in future phases.

Frontline essential workers under this category will include first responders, teachers/school staff, child care, correctional staff, public transit, postal workers, grocery store staff, food and agricultural, and manufacturing, according to Lamont.

Previously, phase 1B included people over the age of 65, but that number has since been fine-tuned.

For phase 1C, which is expected to take place late spring, people 65 and up will be eligible to receive the vaccine. Other essential workers and people with high-risk medical conditions will also be included in this category, the governor said.

The governor's vaccine advisory board said they will provide additional guidance on this soon. They have not yet released their recommendations.

New COVID-19 Numbers

The state's positivity rate has decreased to 5.18% and 95 more deaths have been reported over the weekend.

Connecticut's death toll is now 5,676. The state's rolling 7-day positive test rate average is 6.1%.

"Perhaps things are stabilizing," Lamont said in a press conference on Monday.

Of nearly 89,000 tests performed, 4,595 came back positive. Over 167,000 Connecticut residents have tested positive for the virus since it emerged in March.

Net hospitalizations have decreased by 24, bringing the state's total to 1,143.

Total COVID tests administered in the state have now exceeded 4 million.

On Friday, the state had a 6.85% positive test rate.

COVID Vaccine Update

As of Monday, a total of 7,761 COVID vaccine doses have been administered in phase 1A. All of these vaccines were the first of two doses.

The state is expanding provider networks receiving vaccines this week. This will include 34 hospital locations, 21 federally qualified health centers, and 21 local health departments, Lamont said.

Nine nursing homes have completely vaccinated their staff and resident population, with 75 more scheduled for this week.

The governor said one-third of Connecticut nursing homes will have received the first dose of the COVID vaccine by the end of the week.

Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines have arrived in Connecticut with frontline health care workers and nursing home residents and staff the first people to receive doses.

With two vaccines expected to be available soon, NBC Connecticut spoke with two experts about the development of and differences between the two vaccines.

New Help for Small Businesses

The governor announced $35 million in business recovery grants, which is targeted to the hardest hit small to mid-size businesses.

These businesses include restaurants, bars, food service, retail, lodging, entertainment, and recreation, according to Lamont.

Grant sizes will range from $10,000 to $30,000, the governor announced.

Lamont said he expects the final pool to include between 1,500 and 2,000 businesses.

The assistance will act as a bridge to new paycheck protection program support.

Checks are expected to be sent around Dec. 31, according to the governor.

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