I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
Today’s Case Count
As of today, there have been 510,148 total confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, and there are 2,982 newly reported confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state today. 127,468 tests have been performed today, and 14,563 have passed away. Learn more here. As of today, 4,439 Cambridge residents have tested positive for COVID-19 and 117 residents have passed away, according to the state’s database. Learn more here.
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.
Baker Press Conference Updates
Governor Baker announced today that the Massachusetts Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line is now available for individuals ages 75 and older who cannot use or have difficulty accessing the internet. The line is available in English and Spanish and will have translators available for approximately 100 additional languages. Callers will be able to speak to a representative live on the phone to assist them with an appointment through the state’s online system or to place them on a call back list if no appointments are available. The hours of operation are Monday to Friday, 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM. Call 2-1-1 and follow prompts to reach The Massachusetts Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line.
The Governor also announced a public awareness campaign called “Trust the Facts. Get the Vax,” which will launch before the Super Bowl this weekend and will continue to air over the next five months. It will consist of ads featuring a diverse group of doctors who will explain why the vaccine is important, safe and effective. The ads will air in 11 languages and an American Sign Language version will also be available on the state’s website. Read more here.
Governor Baker said today that there are still 20,000 COVID-19 vaccination appointments available for next week at mass vaccination sites. New appointments go live every Thursday.
Individuals age 75 and older are eligible for COVID-19 vaccination as of February 1st and can make appointments at mass.gov/COVIDVaccine or at maimmunizations.org. For detailed information about how to make an appointment, including updates about specific health care providers, see the Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services vaccine resources page.
Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services (SCES) is also offering free transportation for local older adults to COVID-19 vaccination sites in Cambridge and Somerville as well as Fenway Park and CHA Malden. If you are age 75 and up, from Cambridge or Somerville, and you need a ride to your vaccination site, please contact SCES. For more information, click here. To register for a ride, call SCES at 617-628-2601 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The City of Cambridge has published accessibility information for the state’s mass vaccination sites. You can find it here.
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 February 4, 2021:
- Cumulative doses administered: 681,472
- Cumulative Moderna doses shipped to MA: 619.400
- Cumulative Pfizer doses shipped to MA: 276,900
Massachusetts is currently at the beginning of Phase Two of vaccine rollout: the first priority group, individuals aged 75 years or older. There are currently 125 vaccination sites in Massachusetts and it is expected that this will ramp up to 165 sites by mid-February. The map of vaccination sites is here; you can now search by zip code as well.
As the state transitions into Phase Two, the priority groups are:
- Individuals 75 or older
- Individuals 65 or older or with two or more comorbidities and/or residents and staff of low income and affordable senior housing
- Early education and K-12 workers, transit, utility, food and agriculture, sanitation and public health workers
- 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/covid-19-vaccine.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has a Frequently Asked Questions site that is continually updated as they receive new questions. Access the FAQs here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-vaccine-frequently-asked-questions. Questions can be submitted to COVID-19-Vaccine-Plan-MA@mass.gov.
COVID Testing Sites
Testing appointments through the City’s free mobile-testing program are 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.
The Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation and Tufts Health Plan Foundation are giving a total of $1 million in grants to 42 organizations across five New England states to expand COVID-19 vaccine education, awareness and outreach efforts in communities of color. Along with groups from Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire and Rhode Island, the awardees include 13 Massachusetts organizations. Learn more here.
Youth Employment Opportunity
The Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General has announced the FY2022 Healthy Summer Youth Jobs Grant Program. Applicants may apply for grants to fund jobs for youth with core health and wellness components while also providing opportunities for professional enrichment. The deadline for applications is March 5. To learn more about this opportunity, click here.
Harvard University COVID-19 information, click here.
MIT COVID-19 information, click here.
The Cambridge Health Department shared its most recent update to the City Council on the Public Health Response to COVID-19 Pandemic in Cambridge in these slides.
CPS Community Budget Meeting
Share your thoughts on how Cambridge Public Schools can use its resources to help students next school year. February 6, 10:00 am – 11:30 am. Click here to register.
The City of Cambridge announced that it is extending its rollback to a modified Phase II, Step 2 of the Commonwealth’s Reopening Massachusetts Plan for one week and will be returning to Phase III, Step 1 effective on Monday, February 8 at 12:00 AM. Sectors including museums, movie theaters, indoor historic sites and indoor recreational activities will be allowed to reopen at that time. Learn more here.
Cambridge Library Services
Contactless holds pick-up at all library locations will resume the week of February 8. Holds pickup will resume on Monday, February 8 at Central Square Branch and Valente Branch; Tuesday, February 9 at the Main Library; and Wednesday, February 10 at O’Neill Branch. The winter schedule includes a dedicated hour for seniors and at-risk individuals at the start of each service day at the Main Library. The full schedule of hours and additional details will be posted on the library website at www.cambridgema.gov/cpl. For assistance, call 617-349-4040 or email email@example.com.
Translation Resources Available
Multilingual city resources and information on COVID-19 are available on the City’s multilingual help page.
February Vacation Activities
The Center for Families is providing a week of fun and free virtual activities for February vacation week, 2/15-2/20. Registration is required. For more information, go to https://letstalkcambridge.org/february-family-fun-week/. To register, call 617-349-6385 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Daily Table is a nonprofit community grocer dedicated to providing fresh, tasty, convenient, and nutritious food to communities most in need at prices everyone can afford. The grocer offers 50% off fresh produce for SNAP recipients. Daily Table opened its third location in Central Square, 684 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139. Please spread the word for those who could benefit from this amazing new resource. For more information, click here.
Where to Give
Transition House in Need of Emergency Donations
- Make a donation
- Order from their wishlist
If you are able to give to others during this time, I encourage you to look to additional 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
- Food for Free
- Chelsea Food Collaborative
- 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.