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3/24/20 - COVID-19 Update from First Selectman Jim Marpe

Post Date:03/24/2020 3:00 PM

The Town of Westport is making every effort to keep residents informed in a timely manner, but increased internet activity associated with remote service carriers may result in delays in receiving e-mail

Westport, CT – Westport Weston Health District (WWHD) Director of Health Mark Cooper has again reviewed the number of positive COVID19 cases being reported by the Connecticut State Department of Health (DPH).  As of 4 pm yesterday, March 23, 2020, out of the total confirmed laboratory cases of 415 in Connecticut, 270 were located in Fairfield County, 74 were from Westport and 4 from Weston. Test result information is changing rapidly.  The Town of Westport and the WWHD are relying upon the state to give the numbers that get reported late in the day.

Mr. Cooper stated, “Being ‘hit’ first, we may be first to see the virus start to slow its spread, so long as people self-isolate and socially distance themselves from others. Only time will tell.”  He added, “in the coming weeks, a more rapid test will become available reducing the time between sample collection and getting the results.  Further, of those with confirmed cases in Connecticut, it is interesting to note that although no age group is spared, the 40 to 49 and 50 to 59 age groups have the highest number of laboratory confirmed COVID19 cases. The 60 to 69 and over 80 age groups make up the majority of those being hospitalized.”

For a more detailed look at how COVID19 is spreading across the state, go to portal.ct.gov/coronavirus.  For more information from the WWHD and for information on local testing, please visit wwhd.org for their daily updates COVID-19 crisis.  Last night’s message from the WWHD can be found at wwhd.org/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid19-updates-4/

According to the WWHD, the private testing company, Murphy Medical, was able to successfully test 45 Westport and Weston residents today.  However, due to the shortage of test supplies, some of this morning’s tests had to be rescheduled. Those unable to test today were directed to alternate testing locations by Murphy Medical staff.  The staff at WWHD will regroup, make some adjustments, and plan to restart the Westport Weston drive-thru testing site on Tuesday, March 31 at 8:30 am, weather and testing supplies availability permitting.

Appointments and required prescriptions can be obtained by filling out forms for Murphy Medical at www.coronatestct.com.  If you are already experiencing flu-like symptoms, you are urged to call your physician/local health provider. 

Town Services

Town Hall and Town offices are closed to the public until further notice.  Essential staff will remain on-site utilizing alternating work schedules with some staff working remotely.  The Planning & Zoning Department has resumed accepting applications for Zoning Permits.  For more information, search “Planning & Zoning Department” on the town’s website westportct.gov.  Westport Weston Probate Court remains open 8:30 am to 4:30 pm weekdays with limited staff conducting hearings via telephone and video.  Call 203-341-1100 with questions for the Probate Court.

First Selectman Marpe said, “The WWHD and the Town are making every attempt to insure the public is informed of the rapidly changing conditions and numbers associated with the COVID-19 crisis.  It is important that our community remain vigilant and informed, but please understand that there is a limit to the information we are legally allowed to publicize relative to specific individuals and events.  Also, we are relying upon the State to supply regional numbers, and those are changing rapidly as well.”

As a reminder, it is imperative that everyone stay safe and stay home.  Residents should be self-isolating and maintaining what is increasingly being referred to as “virus distancing” everywhere. Stores and certain businesses remain open to insure that food and essentials are available to the public. All other activities where people may congregate in groups must be avoided. Please do your part – self-isolate and maintain virus distancing at all times and do not gather in groups.

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