Stamford Returning To Phase 2 Reopening As Coronavirus Cases Rise

STAMFORD, CT — Mayor David Martin announced Thursday the city will return to “phase 2” of reopening following an increase in cases of the coronavirus in the city and across the state.

According to the state health department’s COVID-19 data tracker, Stamford is now at 15.6 cases per 100,000, qualifying the city as a “red zone,” Martin said in a news release.

The city also recently received data from the Wastewater Early Detection Program indicating the highest levels of COVID-19 residue in Stamford’s wastewater since the program began in August, Martin said.

See also: High Virus Concentrations Found In Stamford, Bridgeport Sewage

“This is a difficult decision,” Martin said in a statement, “but every indicator we’re monitoring suggests we’re at the beginning of a second wave. Unfortunately, this means we must change our behavior immediately.”

Martin also emphasized the urgency of residents increasing their caution as the city transitions back to phase 2.

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“This second wave is no longer speculative or a possibility, it is happening right now,” Martin said. “There is no feasible way to get our community and economy close to normal if everyone is getting sick. I am reluctant to make this decision because I know how it will impact our businesses and community, but the city of Stamford must rollback to phase 2 as soon as possible.”

Similar to phase 3, residents are required to maintain 6 feet of distance from others, wash or sanitize their hands frequently and wear either a mask or a face covering that covers both their nose and mouth.

The following restrictions are also in place under phase 2:

A full list of restrictions during phase 2, including specific guidelines for various businesses and establishments, can be found on the city website.

According to Jennifer Calder, the city’s director of health, the best defense against this virus is to avoid getting infected and avoid activities that could lead to infection.

“Any interaction with individuals outside your household puts you at risk,” Calder said in a statement. “This is especially true now as we report more cases per day. While many residents are fatigued of health and safety guidelines, unfortunately the virus does not get fatigued and will continue to spread if we let it.”

Residents can monitor daily coronavirus cases by visiting the state health department’s COVID-19 data tracker.

This article originally appeared on the Stamford Patch

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Doping Tests Are Returning, but It Might Be Too Late

Tygart said he saw all of this as something of victory, since studies of doping prevalence from the past decade have recorded anonymous admissions of guilt from as many as 40 percent of respondents.

While the athletes in the USADA study admitted to far lower levels of doping, they expressed deep skepticism that their rivals were abiding by the rules. More than 50 percent said they believed international athletes had used the lull in testing caused by the pandemic as a doping opportunity, and 30 percent said they suspected American athletes had done so.

“Without testing, the confidence in the system goes way down,” Tygart said.

And the temptation remains. Just 42 percent of those surveyed said integrity in sports was more important than financial gain.

James Fitzgerald, a spokesman for the World Antidoping Agency, said testing numbers had been on the rise since May, though they still remain far behind last year’s figures, in part because so many competitions, where a lot of testing occurs, had been canceled. . In September, 17,643 tests were conducted, compared with 26,638 during that month in 2019.

Fitzgerald said national and regional antidoping organizations were doing their best while adhering to limits the local health authorities have placed on their activities. But he added that WADA does have other tools.

“While testing is important as a means to catch cheats and as a deterrent, it is not the only strategy available,” Fitzgerald said. “There are other angles of attack being pursued, which include intelligence and investigations, technology and research, sample storage and re-analysis, and the Athlete Biological Passport,” which can track dramatic changes in blood and hormone levels over time.

The damage to sporting integrity, though, may be done already. Studies have shown that even one cycle of performance-enhancing drugs that quickly leave the body can produce benefits that last as long as four years. That would certainly make a cycle that took place last spring beneficial at the Olympics next summer, or the Winter Games in Beijing in February 2022.

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All Strongsville Students Returning To School

STRONGSVILLE, OH — Despite an upgraded COVID-19 threat, the Strongsville Board of Education decided to bring all students back into classes starting Monday.

At an emergency board meeting held Friday evening, the board decided to move forward with reopening plans. Students in PreK-5th grade will be in class every day. Older students will take part in a blended education model.

As of Saturday morning, four Strongsville students have tested positive for COVID-19: two students at the middle school and two students at the high school.

The district asked 84 other students at the schools to quarantine after they were possibly exposed to the virus.

Then, on Thursday, the Ohio Department of Health reclassified Cuyahoga County as “red” for its high rate of COVID-19 spread and transmission. One of the early indicators for virus spread is outpatient visits, Gov. Mike DeWine said. Outpatient visits in Cuyahoga County have spiked dramatically over the past 10 days. Two weeks ago, the county was averaging 187 outpatient visits per day. By Oct. 13, the county was averaging 445 outpatient visits per day.

Additionally, the Greater Cleveland Congregations has called on Cuyahoga County public schools to provide frequent COVID-19 testing for students and staff. The Cuyahoga County Board of Health has set out guidelines for school districts to reopen. However, the congregations said the guidelines miss one crucial component: frequent COVID-19 testing for students, teachers and staff.

This article originally appeared on the Strongsville Patch

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