I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
As of today, 1774 Cambridge residents have tested positive for COVID-19 and 100 residents have passed away, according to the state's database. Learn more here. There have been 177,627 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, and there are 2,674 newly reported confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state today. 81,305 patients have been tested today, and 10,265 have passed away. Learn more here.
Harvard University COVID-19 information, click here.
MIT COVID-19 information, click here.
State Action Updates
Mass. Just Surpassed 10,000 COVID Deaths. Here's Why Medical Experts Are Concerned
Once a coronavirus hot spot, Massachusetts was seen as a model for infection control this summer as coronavirus cases and deaths dwindled. Now, experts are warning the state could be headed for a bleak winter as its cases climb once again and confirmed deaths surpass 10,000. Amid growing calls for action, Republican Gov. Charlie Baker recently tightened restrictions but has resisted taking more drastic measures such as halting indoor dining. The governor insists Massachusetts is better prepared than it was in the spring, but says if the trends continue it will only be a matter of time before the state’s hospitals are once again stressed under a flood of patients. Massachusetts hit 10,015 confirmed coronavirus deaths on Thursday, nearly nine months after the state’s initial case was detected. Confirmed cases have topped 174,000 and the number of cities and towns designated as “high risk” nearly doubled over a two-week period last month. Nationwide, the pandemic has killed more than 240,000, but the real toll is thought to be much higher, in part because many COVID-19 deaths were probably ascribed to other causes, especially early on, before widespread testing. Massachusetts has the sixth-highest death toll in the U.S. behind New York, Texas, California, New Jersey and Florida. Read more here.
As COVID Cases Grow, Maine Reinstates Travel Restrictions For Massachusetts
Massachusetts residents will no longer be able to travel to Maine without providing a negative COVID-19 test or complying with a quarantine. The change goes into effect Monday and also includes Maine residents returning from Massachusetts. The coronavirus restrictions against Massachusetts were lifted on Sept. 23, months after Gov. Charlie Baker said he spoke to Maine Gov. Janet Mills about lifting them. Anyone who wishes to go to Maine will have to provide a negative COVID test from within 72 hours of arrival or quarantine for 14 days. Read more here.
Baker Press Conference Updates:
Baker-Polito Administration Announces Re-establishment of a Field Hospital at the DCU Center in Worcester
The Baker-Polito Administration today announced that the first field hospital will be stood up at the DCU Center in Worcester as the Commonwealth prepares additional capacity for COVID-19 patients. This site will be built by the National Guard and is the first field hospital to re-open in the state since June. The plan to re-establish the field hospital in Worcester was activated this week. The site is expected to be available for patients in the first week of December if needed and additional locations will be added in other regions if necessary. No further changes or restrictions to regular hospital services in Massachusetts are being implemented at this time. Watch the announcement here.
In-Person Learning to Continue; Adoption of Updated COVID-19 Metrics
The School Committee voted to adopt updated metrics recommended by CPS’s scientific advisors to reflect local Cambridge data for two of our three metrics. In alignment with these revised guidelines, CPS school buildings will remain open and we will continue our current in-person learning model for students currently in school.
CPS will continue planning for all scenarios and supporting community dialogue to improve our efforts:
- We are preparing for a future potential need to shift to all-remote learning. See below for what to expect in that situation.
- Over the next few weeks we will be gathering student, staff, and family feedback on how to improve both in-person and remote learning through a variety of methods, including surveys and listening sessions.
- We know that some families are eager for plans for future expansion of in-person learning, including many families of 4th through 12 graders.
SCHEDULE A FLU SHOT AT DRIVE THROUGH CLINIC NOVEMBER 14 AT CAMBRIDGESIDE
Please Note: This clinic was originally scheduled to be held at Danehy Park but will now be at CambrdgeSide. This is a drive-through clinic that can be accessed by motor vehicle only through the garage. The site cannot accommodate anyone arriving by bicycle or on foot. Upcoming Drive-Through Flu Clinic
Saturday, November 14, 9 a.m. - 7 p.m. (Appointment Required).
CambridgeSide in East Cambridge, Level 2 1/2 (enter at First and Spring St.)
Cambridge flu clinics are now open. The Cambridge Public Health Department is ramping up its efforts to vaccinate more residents than in previous years, with the goal of administering 10,000 flu shots this season. The flu vaccine is being donated by Cambridge Health Alliance. People who live and work in Cambridge can get a flu shot at no charge at one of the flu clinics run by the Cambridge Public Health. Flu shot appointments are required this year. To schedule an appointment online, go to https://cphd-flu-2020.as.me. The City's Flu Clinic Call Center at 617-349-9788 will open next week for those who wish to make appointments by phone. You can learn more about the clinics here.
Contactless Holds Pickup Service hours at the O'Neill Branch, 70 Rindge Ave., Cambridge have been extended. The new schedule, which will go into effect on Wednesday, October 7, is as follows:
Wednesdays, 1:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m.
Thursdays, 11:00 a.m.- 5:30 p.m.
Fridays, 11:00 a.m.- 5:30 p.m.
Where to Get Tested
Testing appointments through the City's free mobile-testing program are now available at the following locations:
- CambridgeSide in East Cambridge, 11:00am – 7:00pm (Drive-through testing in garage. Enter on First St.) Sundays and Thursdays
- 50 Church St. 12:00pm – 8:00pm (beginning November 9th) Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays
- 2254 Massachusetts Ave, St. John the Evangelist Church, 10:00am – 6:00pm Wednesdays
- Pisani Center located at 131 Washington Street. 11:00am – 7:00pm Saturdays
You can schedule an appointment online or by calling 617-665-3795.
Translation Resources Available
Multilingual city resources and information on COVID-19 are available on the City's multilingual help page.
Where to Give
On Fridays, Cambridge CoHousing will be collecting food for the Chelsea Food Collaborative. Drop off is between 9 AM to 2:30 PM at 175 Richdale Ave, the entrance to CoHousing, either in a paper bag or small box. If you don't see someone at the moment you come, please leave it just inside the gate where we will have boxes marked "For Chelsea."
If you are able to give to others during this time, I encourage you to look to the following places that are working to help those most affected by COVID-19:
Cambridge Community Foundation
Cradles to Crayons Emergency Essentials Fund
I also encourage you to donate to the following organizations that are engaging in racial justice work:
Louis D. Brown Peace Institute
Families for Justice as Healing
Union of Minority Neighborhoods
As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me with questions or concerns at Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov.