I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
As of today, 1522 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 148,336 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, and there are 1216 newly reported confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state today. 2,652,248 patients have been tested, and 9,657 have passed away. Learn more here.
State Action Updates
COVID cases in Massachusetts top 1,000 for second day in a row
Massachusetts public health officials on Sunday reported another 1,097 new cases of COVID-19, the second day in a row with more than 1,000 cases as the pandemic continues to see spikes across the nation and overseas. Until Saturday and Sunday, the state had not reported 1,000 new cases in a single day since May. New COVID-19 case counts in Massachusetts on both Thursday and Friday were in the 900s. Read more here.
These High-Risk Mass. Communities Are Moving Back to Step 1 of Phase 3
More than a dozen communities in Massachusetts are reverting back to Step 1 of Phase 3 of the state’s reopening plan after being designated as high-risk communities for three weeks now. Some of these businesses just opened a few weeks ago under the state’s guidelines and now, today, will have to close yet again. The state releases its weekly reports based on 14 days of information. There are 13 cities and towns that fall under that category.
The following is the full list of communities who have been reverted back to high-risk:
COVID testing to be offered in some Massachusetts schools, with priority given for in-person learning
Massachusetts education officials are looking to start the first phase of coronavirus tests in schools with some form of in-person learning, planning to distribute test kits at no cost to a selection of schools and districts. Massachusetts is expected to get about 2 million tests for use in public districts, charter schools, educational collaboratives and approved special education schools, among other areas, according to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. DESE, working with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, is seeking districts to start the first phase of testing, which is intended for districts or schools with either full in-person learning, a hybrid model or in-person learning just for high-needs students, according to guidance from DESE. Read more here.
Governor Baker Press Conference Updates:
Governor Baker did not hold a press conference today.
RIVERBEND PARK IN CAMBRIDGE TO REMAIN OPEN THROUGH NOVEMBER 29, 2020
The City of Cambridge and the Department of Conservation & Recreation (DCR) announced today that Riverbend Park in the City of Cambridge will continue to open for pedestrian and cyclist use on Saturdays and Sundays through November 29, 2020 and Memorial Drive will be closed to vehicular traffic from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Members of the public are reminded that they should maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet from non-household members. Read more here.
In-person early voting will run from Saturday, October 17th to Friday, October 30th, at 3 locations in Cambridge:
- Longfellow Community School – 359 Broadway, rear entrance
- Cambridge Water Department – 250 Fresh Pond Parkway
- Valente Library – 826 Cambridge Street, side entrance on Berkshire Street
- Weekdays, Monday to Friday – 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 17th, Sunday, Oct. 18th, and Sunday, Oct. 25th – 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 24th – 1:00 to 7:00 p.m.
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. Cambridge residents can get a free flu shot at the health department’s public clinics. The first four clinics will be held indoors on Oct. 15, Oct. 21 (two clinics), and Oct. 22 at the King Open School, 850 Cambridge Street in the Wellington-Harrington neighborhood. Outdoor clinics will be held on Oct. 28-29 at Starlight Square (the parking lot at the corner of Norfolk St. and Bishop Allen Dr. in Central Square) and at Danehy Park/Fresh Pond Plaza on Nov. 14. 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:
- Pisani Center located at 131 Washington Street, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., on Saturday, October 24.
- St. John the Evangelist Church, located at 2270 Massachusetts Avenue, 10:00am – 6:00pm on Wednesday, October 21.
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 3:30 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:
I also encourage you to donate to the following organizations that are engaging in racial justice work:
As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me with questions or concerns at Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov.