Case Prevalence Per 10,000, By Town

For the week ending April 14, 2021

SUSAN BIGELOW

Connecticut’s case numbers increased slightly this week, led by an unusual jump in cases in the city of Bridgeport; the Park City almost doubled its weekly new case count from 395 to 727.

Case counts and case prevalence continue to fluctuate up and down week to week. The situation is neither improving nor worsening, but remains stuck. For the past four weeks new case numbers have been in the 7,500-8,900 range as both vaccinations and more contagious variants of the coronavirus spread throughout the state.

For the week ending April 14, 2021 Connecticut recorded 8,531 new cases of COVID-19, up 652 from last week’s total of 7,879. Case prevalence, or the number of new cases per 10,000 residents, also increased slightly from 22.05 to 23.88. Compared to two weeks ago, however, numbers are actually down very slightly; cases dropped by 335 from the week ending March 31 to the week ending April 14.

Weekly test positivity actually fell from 3.74% for the week ending April 7 to 3.27% for the week ending April 14. However, this is due to a significant increase in the number of tests, not because there were fewer cases. In both cases all this level of test positivity is telling us is that the state is likely recording the vast majority of new cases.

These case numbers seem very stubborn right now, and that can be disheartening. But as more and more of us get vaccinated, they will start to go down. It’s just a question of when that will happen.

Let’s take a look at the map.

There is not much of a geographic pattern to the distribution of case prevalence numbers throughout the state. If you squint, you can see two vaguely-defined regions with higher numbers; a triangle between Bridgeport, Waterbury, and New Haven, and the area around UConn in Mansfield and Windham. Bridgeport, with 727 new cases and a case prevalence of 50.17 new cases per 10,000 residents, has the highest numbers in the state. Waterbury follows as a distant second, with 461 new cases and a case prevalence of 42.65. These are the only towns with a case prevalence of over 40 in the state. 

This is down from last week, when five towns had a case prevalence of over 40. Connecticut has a split personality again, with about half of towns recording decreases in case numbers and the other half recording increases. Most of the statewide increase this week was driven by a small handful of towns; without Stratford, Enfield, Hartford, Stamford, and Bridgeport, the statewide case numbers would actually decline.

There are two general regions with very low case prevalence: the northwest hills and southeastern Connecticut. Five towns reported zero new cases; four of these, Norfolk, Canaan, Cornwall, and Goshen, form a contiguous block in Litchfield County. 

There’s no explanation for the jump in cases in Bridgeport, which obviously underscores the urgent need for vaccination programs in urban and underserved areas. The faster we can get everyone vaccinated, the closer we will be to the light at the end of the tunnel.

Here is last week’s map for comparison.

Case Prevalence Per 10,000, By Town

For the week ending April 7, 2021

Susan Bigelow

Susan Bigelow is an award-winning columnist and the founder of CTLocalPolitics. She lives in Enfield with her wife and their cats.