Doctors across the state are preparing for a post-holiday spike in COVID-19 cases.
"We are all bracing ourselves for what is going to happen after Christmas and after New Year's," said Dr. Virginia Bieluch, chief of infectious diseases at the Hospital of Central Connecticut.
People who gathered with people outside of their household this Christmas are urged to get tested for the virus. If one person at the gathering had the virus, everyone could be infected and not know it, explained Bieluch.
"Particularly when people eat, socialize," she added.
Testing sites are preparing for longer lines.
Last week, Hartford HealthCare did approximately 28,000 tests. They are anticipating a higher volume this week.
Community Health Center is also ready to test more people after doing an average of 4,000 a day last week.
"Testing is great, but remember, testing is a result at one point in time," said Bieluch.
Bieluch said people should not rely on testing to give them a sense of security ahead of any New Year's Eve celebrations.
"Someone could be negative today and go out for New Year's and infect other people unknowingly," said Bieluch. "If you can at all avoid socializing with people outside your household, please do so."
Nearly all of Connecticut is currently under a red alert for COVID cases, including Windham. The town manager said that a lot of cases are being linked to private gatherings.
"You bring 20 people together in a household and that is trouble," said Jim Rivers, town manager of Windham. "Just because we have a holiday, Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year's ...we should be vigilant."
Connecticut's two tribal casinos will be open for New Year's Eve, though Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods both told NBC Connecticut that the celebration will look different, with reduced capacity, social distancing, and limited entertainment.
“It is not going to be like it has been in year’s past," said Kevin Lowry, assistant general manager at Mohegan Sun.
“Obviously just based on where we are in the pandemic, it is not going to be our full blown out activities on property," said Monique Sebastian, vice president of entertainment at Foxwoods Resort Casino.