I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
As of today, 4,030 Cambridge residents have tested positive for COVID-19 and 113 residents have passed away, according to the state’s database. Learn more here. There have been 467,845 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, and there are 4,935 newly reported confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state today. 105,768 tests have been performed today, and 13,702 have passed away. Learn more here.
Baker Press Conference Updates
Governor Baker did not hold a press conference today.
The state has created an interactive dashboard, including the percentage of COVID-19 positive cases and testing rates by city and town. The dashboard can be viewed here.
There have been 938 new COVID-19 cases among students and staff in Massachusetts schools in the last week, according to the latest data from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. That’s eight more cases than the previous week. Districts reported 541 cases among students and 397 among staff members in schools between January 14 and January 20. Read more here.
The Massachusetts Health Connector announced today it is continuing Open
Enrollment until March 23, providing additional time for state residents to access affordable,
quality health insurance, particularly those hurt by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The deadline to select and pay for health insurance coverage that starts February 1st through the Health Connector is tomorrow, January 23rd.
Attorney General Maura Healey and staff are holding a Savvy Senior Consumer Protection Day Virtual Summit on Tuesday, February 23 form 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM. At this brief online summit, seniors and service providers will learn about preventive measures, a variety of protection guidelines, and assistance available that can be used to assist seniors in our communities across the Commonwealth. Register here.
The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles is extending its designated Wednesday appointment hours for customers 75 years of age or older through March 2021. Individuals in this age group are required by state law to renew their Massachusetts driver’s license in-person. Beginning in February, the RMV will also be expanding the license renewal appointments available for these customers to include registration and title services and transactions. Visit Mass.gov/RMV to make a reservation.
The Mass Cultural Council has launched a second round of financial relief for individuals whose creative practices and incomes have been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. Grants of $1,500 are now available to Massachusetts individual artists and independent teaching artists/humanists/scientists. The application deadline is 2/2/21.
Governor Baker will deliver a virtual State of the Commonwealth address live from the State House on Tuesday, January 26 at 7:00 PM.
Governor Baker announced yesterday that all residents in Phase One of the state vaccine distribution plan are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, effective immediately. This includes COVID-facing healthcare workers, long-term care facilities residents and staff, first responders, congregate care residents and staff, home-based healthcare workers, and non-COVID-facing healthcare workers.
Weekly COVID-19 Vaccination Report
The Department of Public Health’s Weekly COVID-19 Vaccination Report is updated each Thursday by 5 PM based on information available in the Massachusetts Immunization System. The report includes vaccine distribution numbers by county, as well as age and race/ethnicity breakdowns of those receiving vaccines. Information as of January 21, 2021:
- Cumulative doses administered: 359,919
- Cumulative Moderna doses shipped to MA: 384,100
- Cumulative Pfizer doses shipped to MA: 207,675
You can view the DPH interactive data dashboard here.
Massachusetts is currently in Phase One of vaccine rollout. Residents in all Phase One groups can now make appointments to receive a vaccine at more than 150 locations across the state including first responder only sites, the newly opened mass vaccination site at Gillette Stadium, regional vaccination sites and participating CVS Health and Walgreens pharmacies. Additional mass vaccination sites, pharmacy sites, and community clinic sites will open in more locations on a rolling basis. A full map of vaccination sites with links for appointments can be found here.
As the state transitions into Phase Two, the first group will be individuals with 2+ comorbidities, individuals aged 75+, and residents and staff of public and private low-income and affordable senior housing. Following this population, workers in COVID-vulnerable sectors, such as teachers, sanitation and public health workers, and transit workers will be vaccinated. Phase Two will finish with vaccinating schedules for individuals 65+ and individuals with one comorbidity.
Phase Three will expand vaccination efforts to the general public.
For more details and updates on vaccination priorities, please visit https://www.mass.gov/info-details/when-can-i-get-the-covid-19-vaccine.
Harvard University COVID-19 information, click here.
MIT COVID-19 information, click here.
Governor’s Rescission of Early Closing Order & Stay at Home Advisory Will Apply to Cambridge
The Commonwealth’s early closing order and stay at home advisory will be rescinded effective 5 a.m. Monday, January 25. The Commonwealth is also extending the 25% capacity limits for most sectors through 5 a.m. on Monday, February 8. Both of the changes announced by the Governor will apply to the City of Cambridge. Read more here.
Cambridge flu clinics are over, but you can still get a flu shot.
The Cambridge Public Health Department’s annual public flu clinics ended on November 14, 2020. Please note that the Cambridge Public Health Department will not be able to offer any flu shot appointments at its office this year due to the pandemic.
Residents are encouraged to visit a local pharmacy or make an appointment with their health care provider. Flu shots are covered by most Massachusetts health insurance plans. Cambridge Health Alliance patients (12 – 22 years old) or Cambridge Public School students (12 – 22 years old) can now receive a flu shot at the Teen Health Center located in Cambridge Rindge and Latin School. Call 617-665-1548 to schedule an appointment.
Cambridge Library Services
Contactless Holds Pickup at at all library locations is suspended until at least February 1. Due dates will be extended until February 16 and no fines will be charged. The Library’s virtual programs and services and digital collections continue to be available. For assistance, call 617-349-4040 or email email@example.com.
Where to Get Tested
Testing appointments through the City’s free mobile-testing program are now available at the following locations:
- Monday – 50 Church St. 12:00pm – 8:00pm
- Tuesday – 50 Church St. 12:00pm – 8:00pm
- Wednesday – 2254 Massachusetts Ave, St. John the Evangelist Church, 10:00am – 6:00pm
- Thursday – CambridgeSide in East Cambridge, 11:00am – 7:00pm (Drive-through testing in garage. Enter on First St.)
- Friday – 50 Church St. 12:00pm – 8:00pm
- Saturday – Christian Life Center located at 85 Bishop Allen Drive. 11:00am – 7:00pm
- Sunday – CambridgeSide in East Cambridge, 11:00am – 7:00pm (Drive-through testing in garage. Enter on First St.)
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
Transition House in Need of Emergency Donations
Transition House’s mission is to break the cycle of domestic violence in our community. In its first decades, Transition House created the first shelter on the East Coast, a legal services program for battered women, a foster grandparent program, and pioneered school-based teen dating violence intervention curricula and programs. Learn more here.
Today, Transition House provides vital housing options for individuals and families surviving domestic and intimate partner violence in Cambridge. With a 40% increase in emergency housing as a response to the pandemic, and rising expenses, Transition House needs support with their mission now more than ever. If you would like to donate, click here. If you would like to order from their wishlist, click here.
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:
- Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund
- Cambridge Health Alliance
- Cambridge Community Center
- Cambridge Community Foundation
- Chelsea Food Collaborative
- Food for Free
- Greater Boston Food Bank
- Hospitality Workers COVID-19 Emergency Fund
- Cradles to Crayons Emergency Essentials Fund
- Mount Auburn Hospital
- The One Chelsea 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
- Prisoners’ Legal Services
- Boston NAACP
- Massachusetts Bail Fund
- ACLU of Massachusetts
- Union of Minority Neighborhoods
As always, do not hesitate to reach out to me with questions or concerns at Marjorie.Decker@mahouse.gov.