COVID-19 concerns have returned, as a rise in metrics for both state and town show we’re not yet out of the woods when it comes to the coronavirus. The state’s weekly update of its risk map and other statistics on Thursday, Dec. 2 show dramatic spikes in COVID’s impact that concern officials.

Wilton Public School Superintendent Kevin Smith expressed those concerns at Thursday night’s Board of Education meeting. He called the last couple of weeks “challenging” for the district.

“We’ve seen new cases each day this week and over the course of the last two weeks, we’ve seen 21 new cases,” he said, calling it a “dramatic” shift from the preceding month.

He pointed to COVID Act Now’s tracking of an average of 18.7 new cases daily per 100,000 people in Fairfield County, while Wilton’s current average is 16.7 new cases over two weeks — a “sharp jump” from the prior BOE meeting when that data point was below five new cases. [Editor’s note: The state’s reporting lags by 5-6 days; the 16.7 new case number is as of Nov. 27; GOOD Morning Wilton’s tally of 18.74 is as of Dec. 2.]

“It’s a worrisome trend,” Smith pointed out, noting, “It’s a turn that’s most unwelcome. We’ll continue to monitor it, and we’re hoping the trend will abate.” He added that he was encouraged by the high number of vaccinations among eligible people in the district, a number he said that continues to increase as well.

State, Town Back in the Red

The change in COVID risk is most clearly visible in the map released weekly by the state showing the 14-day average new daily case rate. Now, in the red risk category, of over 15 cases per 100,000 people are 80% of the state’s municipalities — including Wilton.

On Thursday, the State Department of Public Health reported 14 new one-day COVID-positive cases in Wilton; there have been a total of 35 new cases in the last week alone. Wilton’s 14-day average new case rate per 100,000 people is at 18.74 — a level Wilton hasn’t hit since April 26, 2021.

Statewide, the one-day test positivity rate hit 6.52% on Thursday, the highest single-day positivity rate since Jan. 12, according to the Hartford Courant. The DPH reported 44 COVID-related deaths last week, and there are currently 414 people hospitalized — the highest since April 27.

Wilton’s vaccination rates continue to rise. As of Dec. 2, 86% of the town’s entire population has received at least one dose (up 2% over last week); 75% are fully vaccinated (up 1% over last week).

Of the town’s eligible population (age 5-65+), 89% have received at least one dose (up 3%), and 77% have received both doses (up .5%).

Vaccinations of Wilton Residents (All vs. Eligible)

Vaccinations of Eligible Residents (5-65+ years old)