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Gov. Ned Lamont (ctnewsjunkie file photo)

HARTFORD, CT — Public health data shows state COVID-19 cases have begun creeping back up in the past week, after remaining steady in the wake of their April peak.

Between last week and this week there were 868 new cases, which is up from around 744 the previous week.

Josh Geballe, Gov. Ned Lamont’s chief operating officer, said Monday that there has been an increase in testing partly due to students returning to college campuses. All students, even commuters, are being tested before returning to campus for a mix of in-person and online learning.

“There’s a lot of additional testing occurring based on our focused testing strategy on at-risk populations, but also with back-to-school. Our colleges and universities are doing a lot of additional testing as they bring students back,” Geballe said.

He said hospitalizations remain low, which is a signal of how many people are getting sick in the community.

“We’re at our lowest levels of COVID hospitalizations since this began,” Geballe said.

As of Monday there were 52 people hospitalized.

Since last Monday there have been more than 95,000 tests given. That’s more than the 78,000 given the previous week. And it means Connecticut’s positivity rating has remained under 1%.

“The test positivity rate has remained very stable over a very extended period of time, so I think we’re catching more of the cases with positive tests that have been out there for some time,” Geballe said Monday.

There have been outbreaks in Danbury and East Windsor, coupled with a mild rise in COVID-19 cases in some other cities and towns.

Danbury had 146 new cases in the last week, or 17.23 new cases per 10,000 residents.

In East Windsor, 31 migrant workers on a tobacco farm tested positive, pushing the town of 11,375 to a state-high 30.77 new cases per 10,000 inhabitants. That was before the Journal Inquirer reported Monday that 10 employees at the town’s Blue Bell Mattress Factory also tested positive for COVID-19.

Total New Cases Reported By Town

From Aug. 25 through Aug. 31

There were no new coronavirus related deaths reported Monday leaving Connecticut’s death toll at 4,465.

Some school districts started school on Monday and more are expected to start on Sept. 8.

Gov. Ned Lamont said the state set forth clear guidelines on when schools should move to remote learning, as Danbury did with its flare-up.

“We have clear metrics out there about when we think it’s time to pull back,” Lamont said. “Public health is still our key metric.”

Lamont said he thinks it’s safe to reopen schools, even though he didn’t mandate it.

“I think we’ve been traveling for three months in a very narrow band between 0.5 percent and 1.2 percent,” Lamont said Monday during a press briefing. “Right now, I just feel like we’re in a pretty good position.”

ctnewsjunkie file photo
Gov. Ned Lamont (ctnewsjunkie file photo)