At 3 p.m. on Tuesday, March 10, Governor Lamont declared Civil Preparedness and Public Health Emergencies in Response to the emerging COVID-19 crisis. The Town of Darien’s emergency preparedness team continues to coordinate our local response efforts. All information contained herein is subject to change as the situation here in Connecticut unfolds.

The Town of Darien, in coordination with the Darien Public Schools and all town agencies, is immediately adopting policies and practices consistent with Governor’s recommendations and directives issued on March 9. Town Government and Darien Public Schools are considered ‘essential services’ and will remain operational at this time. For the most updated school-related information, please visit www.darienps.org.

Out of an abundance of caution and to be proactive in response to potential virus spread, we are strongly recommending that all organizations adopt social distancing policies by cancelling/rescheduling large group gatherings, events and activities that draw approximately 100 or more people. ‘Social distancing’ is an important tool to help slow the spread of the virus. While these are very difficult and disappointing decisions, we appreciate the recognition of the important role each individual, family and community group plays in containing the potential spread of the virus. Town of Darien sponsored activities will be considered on a case by case basis.

On March 9, Governor Lamont and his administration issued a series of policy recommendations in response to the spread of COVID-19. At present, there are two test-positive cases of the virus here in Connecticut. In addition, 54 persons have been tested for COVID-19 with negative results. At this time, the CT Department of Public Health has the capability to test 1200 patients while LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics will soon have testing capabilities which will greatly enhance our ability to screen. Any testing must be authorized by a referring physician and is now restricted to those already exhibiting symptoms. All test results will be provided to CT DPH and local health departments for tracking and to assist in localized response efforts.

Governor Lamont also issued specific restrictions on nursing and convalescent homes in Connecticut. Effective immediately, the restrictions permit visitors to enter these facilities only if the person who is residing in the facility is in hospice or end-of-life care and visitors wear proper protective equipment. Protecting our elderly and medically vulnerable residents from COVID-19 is our highest priority. If you or a member of your household is sick, please stay home and consult your primary care physician for directions on how to receive medical attention. Do not arrive at a doctor’s office or hospital without advanced instructions. However, do not delay seeking medical treatment if you are sick. Your healthcare provider will have established protocols for you to receive evaluation and treatment.

For up-to-date information from the State of Connecticut on COVID-19, including guidance and other resources, please visit www.ct.gov/coronavirus. Individuals who are not sick but have general questions not answered by information on the state’s website can call 2-1-1 for assistance. The Centers for Disease Control www.CDC.gov and the World Health Organization www.WHO.int are excellent sources of COVID-19 disease information and travel guidance. Information about local efforts is available on the Town of Darien website at www.darienct.gov.

Jayme Stevenson, First Selectman, Dr. Alan Addley, Superintendent of Schools,Tara Ochman, Board of Education Chairman, David Knauf, Director or Health Alicia Casucci, Director of Nursing Services.