Sununu To Hold News Conference Monday as COVID-19 Cases Climb to 78

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By NANCY WEST, InDepthNH.org
CONCORD
– The number of COVID-19 positive cases has jumped to 78 in New Hampshire with 13 new tests reported Sunday just before 6 p.m., according to the state Department of Health and Human Services.

This is the first positive case of COVID-19 identified in Sullivan County and community-based transmission has now been identified in the majority of the counties in the state. There were 44 cases on Thursday, the last day Republican Gov. Chris Sununu held a press conference.

An hour after the state released the new numbers Sunday, Sununu issued a news release saying he will hold a press conference at 1 p.m. Monday. He hasn’t responded to InDepthNH.org’s request to allow the public to have access to the conference call number for remote reporters or whether reporters who are calling in will be allowed to ask questions as they were during his first COVID-19 press call.

A call-in town meeting held Friday by U.S. Representatives Annie Kuster and Chris Pappas, both Democrats, had more than 10,000 Granite Staters call in seeking information about the COVID-19 crisis. See story here. http://indepthnh.org/2020/03/20/10000-callers-seek-covid-19-answers-at-kuster-pappas-telephone-town-hall/

The state has not responded to a number of questions asked by InDepthNH.org that were sent in by readers, including detailing the age distribution of patients, how many have recovered, which hospitals are caring for them, how many were healthcare workers and what emergency plans are in place for the Seabrook nuclear plant in case all of its operators become ill with the virus.

Two of the new cases are currently hospitalized and one was hospitalized and released, according to the state. So far, six patients out of the 78 positive cases (8%) have been hospitalized, the state said.

The new cases are all adults, including nine men and four women. The 13 newly diagnosed people live in Rockingham (3), Hillsborough County other than Manchester and Nashua (3), Strafford (2), Grafton (1), Manchester (1), Belknap (1), Carroll (1), and Sullivan (1) counties.

Eight of the new cases have either had travel to domestic or international locations or had close contact with a person with a confirmed COVID-19 diagnosis. Five of the cases have no identified risk factors.

The state now says there are no cases in Coos County, that that county of residence announced Friday should have been listed in Grafton County.

On Friday, Sununu and New Hampshire’s Congressional Delegation sent a letter urging President Trump to take additional steps to speed up the production and distribution of critical medical supplies needed to combat the COVID-19 outbreak.

“New Hampshire and states across the country are running dangerously low on supplies needed to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak, including personal protective equipment, swabs needed to conduct diagnostic tests, and ventilators,” the letter said. “States alone cannot address these shortages, especially when they are competing against each other and the federal government to purchase available resources.”

Sign up for InDepthNH.org’s COVID-19 updates here. https://indepthnh.us11.list-manage.com/subscribe/post?u=53cfe7768c926b2bc7dac5257&id=17acd809a7

Current Situation in New Hampshire

New Hampshire 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Summary Report
(updated March 22, 2020, 9:00 AM)

NH Persons with COVID-191 78
Persons with Test Pending at NH PHL2 889
Total Persons Tested at NH PHL3 2341
Persons Being Monitored in NH (approximate point in time) 850

1Includes specimens presumptive-positive at any laboratory and those confirmed by CDC confirmatory testing.
2Includes specimens received and awaiting testing at NH Public Health Laboratories (PHL). Does not include tests pending at commercial laboratories.

3Includes specimens sent to CDC prior to NH PHL testing capacity.

NH DHHS Daily Update on COVID-19 Archive

For more information, please visit the DHHS COVID-19 webpage at https://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdcs/2019-ncov.htm.

People are asked to call 2-1-1 if they have questions or concerns.

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