More than 39,000 doses of the Johson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine are expected to arrive in Connecticut this week, further bolstering the vaccination effort and allowing for more vaccination appointments this week, Gov. Ned Lamont said Monday.
The governor also highlighted positive trends in the infection numbers, noting a four-month low in hospitalizations and a seven-day test positivity rate hovering around 2.6%. With these positive numbers in mind, the state plans to announce changes to capacity restrictions for retail, restaurants and personal services on Thursday.
The daily positivity rate came in at 2.35% Monday, with 114,157 new tests reported and 2,680 new cases. There are 417 currently hospitalized with the virus, a net decrease of 34 since Friday.
There were 29 new deaths reported, bringing the death toll to 7,651.
Connecticut continues to be a leader in vaccine distribution nationally - ranking fifth in the country as of Monday. The state has administered 627,788 first doses of the vaccine so far, and 963,943 total.
State data shows that 75% of those 75 and older have been vaccinated, and 52% of the population 65 to 74.
Eligible educators and childcare providers include pre-K through grade 12 teachers, paraprofessionals, custodial staff, food service providers, school bus drivers and childcare providers as well as in-school administrative staff.
This does not include individuals who are not required to work on-site in a school.
Officials said that the original release of vaccine appointments did not include the Johnson & Johnson doses in the count, and that more appointments should be made available in the coming days.
The governor said he remains committed age-based vaccine distribution method the state has unveiled, despite criticisms raised that it deviates from the CDC guidelines and questions about equitability.
Lamont said the state does have a strategy for equitable distribution that involves reaching out to zip codes that have been identified as vulnerable. The state aims to administer 25% of the vaccine in these 50 priority zip codes and invest in outreach specific to these areas. They are working with hospitals, pharmacies, local health departments, and federally qualified health centers on this effort.