HARTFORD — Deaths attributed to the coronavirus in Connecticut surpassed 550 Sunday, while the number of new cases fell from the previous day.
An additional 60 people across the state have died, putting the death toll at 554.
The state recorded 525 new cases of COVID-19 as of Sunday afternoon, the governor’s office said, bringing the statewide total to 12,035.
The number of newly reported cases fell by nearly half from the day before, down from 972 cases reported Saturday afternoon.
To date, 1,654 people have been hospitalized for the disease, and 41,220 tests have been performed, Gov. Ned Lamont's office said in a press release Sunday.
The new deaths over the weekend included a 30-year-old personal trainer in Norwalk, who is among the youngest deaths in the state.
Dan Spano, a Ridgefield High School graduate, was "perfectly healthy" before the virus took hold, his sister Melissa Castiglia said Sunday. She said her brother died Saturday afternoon from complications caused by a weeks-long battle with COVID-19.
"He was just wonderful," Castiglia said. "Nobody can really say anything bad about him."
Around the state, churches congregated Easter Sunday worshipers online and at drive-in services, and Jewish temples spent the past week ensuring families had everything they would need to celebrate Passover at home.
In a video posted to Twitter for Easter, the governor hinted at a plan to start reopening some businesses in the state.
Lamont said he plans to meet with the governors of New Jersey and New York Monday about our "back to work strategy."
"We've got some work to do to get rid of this COVID virus, we're going to do it in a safe way, but we are going to get our state back to work as soon as we can," Lamont said. "Details to follow, Happy Easter."
Talk of that plan comes after Lamont on Friday ordered nonessential businesses to remain closed until at least May 20, prompting backlash among some legislators and business owners.
During his Sunday afternoon briefing, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo also said his state's plan to reopen would be coordinated with New Jersey and Connecticut.
"How do you get three states to agree on one plan? It's easier to do it alone, but better to do it together," Cuomo said.
In Connecticut, the disease has continued to take a heavy toll among residents of nursing homes, with 49 percent of the state's 215 homes now reporting at least one confirmed cases of COVID-19. Among residents, 195 have died — 35 percent of the state’s deaths — and 1,362 have tested positive.
Amid the new deaths and cases on Sunday, public officials raised concern that high winds forecast on Monday could damage outdoor sites for testing for the virus.
On Twitter and Facebook, Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton warned residents of the impending high wind watch, but said a decision to close facilities would have to come from the state.
Darien First Selectman Jayme Stevenson said the town's COVID-19 testing facility would open Tuesday afternoon due to the expected weather.
St. Mary's Hospital in Waterbury announced on Twitter that its testing facility would be closed Monday, and NBC Connecticut reported all Hartford HealthCare and UConn HealthCare sites would be closed.
As the tri-state governors said they are considering how to reopen businesses, the top federal infectious disease expert also signaled a willingness to start reopening the country beginning in May.
"We are hoping that, at the end of the month, we could look around and say, 'OK, is there any element here that we can safely and cautiously start pulling back on?'" Dr. Anthony Fauci said. "If so, do it. If not, then just continue to hunker down."