Coronavirus update: Connecticut unveils new COVID app as 80% of population under 'red alert' status

Connecticut coronavirus update
CONNECTICUT (WABC) -- The COVID crisis has reached a boiling point in Connecticut, where about 80% of the state's population is now living under 'red alert' status.

The state announced on Thursday, 1,158 new COVID cases, 10 deaths and a statewide positivity rate of 4.82%.

In addition, the number of people hospitalized has doubled in the last two weeks, with an increase of 33 patients, bringing the total to 617.

Of the 169 cities and towns in the state, 100 are now in the 'red alert' status, which makes up roughly 80% of the state's population.

In order to curb the pandemic, the state administered 24,000 tests -- making Connecticut top 5 in the country, with 98% of people getting results in a day or two

Governor Ned Lamont also unveiled on Thursday, Connecticut's official COVID-19 exposure notification app, 'COVID Alert CT.'

"We're making every effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 in Connecticut," Governor Lamont said. "This app is another tool to make sure that every resident of our state has what they need to combat this pandemic from the ground up."

The governor explained that the app is not a replacement for the state's contact tracing system, but can supplement it in an incredibly helpful way.

The special app notifies you if you come in close proximity to someone who tested positive, all without sharing users personal information.

"This is just one example of how we are leveraging modern technology to fight this pandemic and keep Connecticut safe," Connecticut's Chief Operating Officer Josh Geballe said.

The app's unveiling comes as many schools in the state have ended in-person learning amid rising outbreaks.

Connecticut's largest school district in Bridgeport is among several in the state to announce an end or scaling back of in-person learning as coronavirus rates keep rising.

"The consistent increase in positive cases of COVID-19 in our community is cause for great concern at this time, as it affects our ability to safely keep our schools adequately staffed and safe for in-person learning," Bridgeport Superintendent of Schools Michael Testani said.

Bridgeport is seeing some of the largest increases of infections in the state, with a two-week average of 53 new daily cases per 100,000 population.

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