A Middletown resident has tested positive for the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Middletown Mayor Ben Florsheim ’14 announced on Saturday, March 21. This marks the City’s first confirmed case of COVID-19.
The patient is a 50 year-old man who, according to the announcement, is currently self-quarantining. According to WTNH journalist LaSalle Blanks, the patient had recently travelled to Florida. It is not known where the patient contracted COVID-19.
As of Saturday, March 21, 223 people in Connecticut have tested positive for COVID-19, including six Middlesex County residents. Three of those six patients are hospitalized.
Florsheim urged Middletown residents to follow the guidance from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Connecticut Department of Public Health.
“This is the first confirmed case but will certainly not be the last,” Florsheim wrote. “Please, take seriously the guidance we have been sharing from [the] Centers For Disease Control (CDC) and Connecticut Department of Public Health. Stay home, wash your hands, and maintain social distance. We’ll get through this—but it will take time, and will take all of us.”
City Health Director Dr. Joseph Havlicek said in the City of Middletown’s press release that he was not surprised by the confirmation of a COVID-19 case in Middletown, as community transmission of the virus has been happening in the area.
Florsheim emphasized the importance of individual actions amid the spread of the virus.
“The details of this case really underscore the fact that anyone can get this, we can be carrying it without realizing it, and the idea that it is only something to worry about if you’re elderly is dangerously wrong,” Florsheim wrote in a message to The Argus. “Everyone has to be part of the solution, which means staying home and supporting people on the front lines.”
Middlesex Health is currently in the process of setting up an outdoor testing facility, according to Middlesex Health’s Public Relations Director Amanda Falcone.
“Earlier this week, we placed a trailer and tent in front of the Middletown Emergency Department entrance on Crescent Street,” Falcone wrote in an email to The Argus. “We still need to secure the necessary approvals, but this setup should ultimately allow us to evaluate patients outdoors who may have COVID-19.”
Middletown residents can call the City Health Department hotline at 860-638-4965 with their questions about COVID-19 between 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. on weekends and between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m on weekdays.
Residents should contact their primary healthcare providers if they think they are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19.
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