Patrick Skahill | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

Patrick Skahill

Reporter

Patrick Skahill is a reporter at WNPR. He covers science with an emphasis on health care and the environment. Prior to becoming a reporter, he was the founding producer of WNPR's The Colin McEnroe Show, which began in 2009 and won a PRNDI award in 2011. 

He writes about science for The Beaker. 

Patrick's reporting has appeared on NPR's Morning Edition, Here & Now, and All Things Considered. He has also reported for the Marketplace Morning Report. 

A graduate of Villanova University, Patrick holds a bachelor's degree in history with a concentration in Arab & Islamic Studies and a minor in Classical Studies. He holds a master's degree in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. He knows way too much about Seinfeld.

He can be reached by phone at 860-275-7297 or by email: pskahill@wnpr.org.

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Federal workplace safety inspectors are investigating the death or hospitalization of at least three Connecticut elder care workers due to complications from COVID-19. 

The investigations come as union officials say at least six unionized nursing home employees have died from coronavirus. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

As the state’s businesses start to reopen this week, barbershops and hair salons will not be among them.

Both were initially slated for a May 20 reopening, but on Monday, Gov. Ned Lamont pushed that date back to June 1. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Coronavirus-related hospitalizations continue to drop, Gov. Ned Lamont said Friday, but the economic fallout of a surge in unemployment claims continues to tear through the workforce as Connecticut is poised to reopen some parts of its dormant economy next week. 

Governor Ned Lamont
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Coronavirus-related hospitalizations continue to decline as Connecticut works its way toward reopening portions of its economy on May 20. But on Thursday, a group of Democratic state senators said that date was too soon and urged Gov. Ned Lamont to delay his plans to ease business restrictions. 

coronavirus testing
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

After weeks of long lines at COVID-19 testing clinics, state and local officials said Connecticut is now facing a different problem: too many coronavirus tests and not enough people taking them. 

college student uconn
Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public

Connecticut will adopt a phased-in approach to reopening state colleges and universities, officials said Wednesday. The plan could mean that research programs resume as early as May 20, but it remains unclear whether campuses will reopen fully to students this fall.

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Ilana Usiskin said when she picks up the phone to call someone infected with coronavirus, she’ll often ask them to think back over the past few days. 

school children
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Schools around the state will be closed to in-person learning for the remainder of the academic year, Gov. Ned Lamont announced Tuesday. 

Meanwhile, after nearly two weeks of a steady decline in coronavirus hospitalizations, statewide numbers spiked slightly on Tuesday, but officials said a one-day increase wouldn’t complicate plans to reopen portions of Connecticut’s economy later this month. 

voting booth
Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public

For the 12th consecutive day, Connecticut’s COVID-19 hospitalizations continued to decline, Gov. Ned Lamont said Monday.

Gov. Ned Lamont
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Connecticut’s coronavirus hospitalizations continue to decline, but the death toll is still rising. On Friday, state officials reported 82 more COVID-19 associated deaths — bringing the weekly death toll to more than 400 people. It’s a grim undercurrent in a week of cautious optimism from Gov. Ned Lamont, as he prepares to get portions of the state back to work by May 20.

closed small business
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Connecticut’s shuttered economy could begin to reopen on May 20, starting with a limited number of businesses such as restaurants and nail salons, Gov. Ned Lamont said Thursday. But there will be restrictions even for those businesses, and state officials caution that any reopening strategy depends on adequate testing and a persistent decline in coronavirus cases. 

coronavirus testing
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

The state has changed the way it reports testing for COVID-19, the result of which meant a one-day jump of about 11,000 tests reported to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Tyler Russell / Connecticut Public

Around 15,000 small businesses in Connecticut were “frozen out” of a federal relief program that ran out of money, Gov. Ned Lamont said Wednesday. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Gov. Ned Lamont announced a partnership with Quest Diagnostics on Tuesday that he said will boost the state’s capacity to test for COVID-19. The announcement comes as officials said 35 people have died from complications related to coronavirus at Kimberly Hall North, a nursing home in Windsor. 

national guard
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Gov. Ned Lamont painted a picture Monday of a state with an eventually reopened economy undergirded by rapid testing and data collection. 

But how officials will use that data to inform public health actions in the coming months is an open question. 

National guard coronavirus testing
Ryan Caron King/Connecticut Public

The number of people in Connecticut who have died from coronavirus topped 1,000 Friday.  

“It’s a milestone tragic day,” Gov. Ned Lamont said Friday. The state’s death toll as of Friday was 1,036.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

The road to reopening Connecticut’s economy will likely require a phased-in approach that will consider hospitalization numbers, widespread COVID-19 testing and detailed tracking of infections in different regions, Gov. Ned Lamont said Thursday. 

face mask
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Gov. Ned Lamont said Wednesday that he is considering an executive order spelling out when and where Connecticut residents should wear face masks in response to the ongoing pandemic.

Despite a few flickers of hope that Connecticut was rounding the bend on COVID-19 cases, Lamont said virus infections continue to grow, with nearly 200 newly reported deaths. 

social distancing
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Gov. Ned Lamont said Tuesday that Connecticut’s social distancing measures to flatten the rate of coronavirus infections seem to be paying off -- striking a hopeful note even as the state’s death toll rose to 277.

social distancing, protest
Tyler Russell / Connecticut Public

The spread of COVID-19 in state prisons comes as Connecticut experienced its largest one-month reduction in prison population in history, according to the state Department of Correction. 

prison gate
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

This post has been updated.

As the number of Connecticut’s new coronavirus cases continues to grow, Gov. Ned Lamont signed another executive order Sunday aiming to provide legal immunity to health care workers facing life-or-death decisions for patients in their care. 

Connecticut Air National Guard
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

Connecticut officials are bracing themselves for a peak in coronavirus cases to hit Fairfield County in mid-to-late April, before the virus surges across New Haven, Hartford and eastern Connecticut, according to case models released Friday.

CT Governor Ned Lamont
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

This post has been updated.

The state fielded 40,000 more unemployment claims over the last 18 days than it did for all of last year. 

It’s a staggering number, one that comes as the state government awaits its share of a $2 trillion federal relief package that could take until the end of April to arrive. And it’s just one more measure of the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic in the state.

national guard
Ryan Caron King/Connecticut Public

This post has been updated.

Two state universities are transforming athletic centers into mobile field hospitals in anticipation of a COVID-19 patient surge. The move comes as the state enters what’s expected to be its worst month of illness, death and hospitalization ushered in by a worldwide pandemic -- a surge marked by the state’s first reported infant death from the coronavirus.

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Connecticut grocers said Tuesday they’ll limit the number of customers allowed inside their grocery stores. The new guidelines will cap crowds at no more than 50% of a store’s local fire code capacity and will be enforced by store staff.

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

As the number of COVID-19 cases in Connecticut continues to grow, the state has been collecting lots of data, but there’s a potential blind spot: nursing homes.

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

Gov. Ned Lamont said he asked the federal government on Thursday to declare a major disaster in Connecticut as the number of COVID-19 cases in the state surpassed 1,000.  

Ned Lamont
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

As federal lawmakers worked on finalizing a $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package, Connecticut officials on Wednesday detailed their own economic recovery plans for small businesses to tackle the “unprecedented” pace of jobless claims in the state.

Pharmacy
Ryan Caron King/Connecticut Public

Doctors and nurses are finding themselves on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. But other health care workers are also putting themselves on front lines every day: pharmacists. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut’s schools will remain closed until at least Monday, April 20, as the state works to contain rising counts of cases and deaths from COVID-19. Meanwhile, Gov. Ned Lamont’s order that “nonessential” businesses statewide close for in-person work took effect at 8 p.m. Monday.

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