I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
Mass VaxMillions Giveaway Registration Now Open
Residents of Massachusetts who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can now register at https://vaxmillionsgiveaway.com/ for one of five $1 million cash prizes or, for those under age 18, a $300,000 scholarship. The deadline to register is August 19, 2021.
Health Insurance Available For People Receiving Unemployment
Individuals currently receiving unemployment benefits may now qualify for a no- or low-monthly cost ConnectorCare health insurance plan from the Health Connector. Learn more at www.mahealthconnector.org
New CDC Guidance for Schools
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released new guidance for early education and care programs and K-12 schools. The recommendations say that unvaccinated students and staff should wear masks and maintain distances of at least 3 feet, but vaccinated students and staff do not have to wear masks. The CDC also recommends that all bus drivers and passengers wear masks regardless of vaccination status. Visit bit.ly/39RLWS8 for more information.
Summer Vax Party Next Wednesday
The Cambridge Public Health Department will hold a Summer Vaccine Clinic at the King Open School on July 14, 2021 from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM. This clinic is open to everyone in Cambridge and they will be administering the Pfizer vaccine. There will be a clinic for the second dose on August 4. Visit bit.ly/Summer-Vax-Info for more information and to register.
Upcoming Webinars on Housing Resources
Cambridge residents are invited to attend 3 upcoming informational webinars about available housing services, programs, and resources. The free webinars will take place on July 20th, August 3rd and September 21st from 3:00-4:00 PM. They will be recorded and available to residents following the events. Visit camb.ma/3qYMSNK to learn more.
MA Vaccination Updates
The Vax Bus is hosting walk-in mobile vaccine clinics in 23 cities and towns. The first round ends July 15 and the second will be from July 17 – August 5 at the same locations. The two-dose Pfizer vaccine will be available for ages 12 and up, and the single dose J&J vaccine will be available for ages 18 and up. Visit mass.gov/vaxbus for hours and locations.
The Vax Express is making a second round of stops from July 7-11, 2021. Walk-ins are welcome and there will be free food, music, and $25 grocery store gift cards with each vaccination. Visit https://www.cic-health.com/vaxexpress for details or to reserve your spot.
Market Basket Vaccine Clinics
There are ongoing COVID-19 vaccine clinics set up in the parking lots of Market Basket stores in Chelsea, Fall River, Lawrence, Lynn and Revere. No appointment is necessary. Anyone who gets a shot at one of these clinics will also receive a $25 Market Basket gift card. See the full clinic schedule here: CIC-health.com/marketbasket.
CHA Offering Walk-In Vaccinations
The Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) is offering walk-in vaccinations at its three sites (176 Somerville Ave. in Somerville, Encore Boston Harbor in Everett and Tufts University in Medford, see https://bit.ly/3eM3TGF for locations and hours). These sites are open to all Massachusetts residents age 12 and older. They encourage people to pre-register here or via MyCHArt (for CHA patients), but walk-ins are welcome. As a reminder, only the Pfizer vaccine is currently approved for use in people under 18 years old, and minors must have a consent form signed by their parent or guardian.
Walk-In Vaccinations Available at CVS
Massachusetts residents age 12 and over can now get walk-in appointments at the 389 vaccine-carrying CVS locations across the Commonwealth. Read more here.
Closing Dates for Mass Vaccination Sites
The Baker-Polito Administration has announced its timeline for ramping down mass vaccination sites. The final upcoming planned closing date is:
- Former Circuit City in Dartmouth: July 13
Cambridge Vaccination Data
The City of Cambridge has added Cambridge Vaccination Data to its COVID-19 Data Center. Data will be updated weekly on Thursdays at 6 PM. Information as of Thursday, July 8, 2021:
Residents who have received at least 1 dose: 81,047
Fully Vaccinated Residents: 74,098
Daily COVID-19 Vaccination Report
Total doses administered: 8,706,310
Total cumulative doses shipped to MA: 9,662,170
Vaccination Appointment Resources
Preparing for your Vaccination Appointment
Learn about how you can prepare for your vaccination appointment here.
Resources for Booking and Getting to Your Appointment
- Online: Find an appointment or see walk-in availability at vaxfinder.mass.gov/. You can also book directly with a pharmacy at cvs.com or walgreens.com.
- Phone: Call 2-1-1 between 8:30 AM-8:00 PM Monday-Thursday or 8:30 AM-5:00 PM Friday-Sunday and select the prompt for “help scheduling a vaccine appointment.”
- In-Home Vaccinations: Anyone who is unable to get to a vaccine location can call the Homebound Vaccination Central Intake Line at 833-983-0485 between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM Monday-Friday.
- Need help? 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.
- Need a ride?
- Somerville-Cambridge Elder Services (SCES) is offering free transportation for local adults aged 60+ to COVID-19 vaccination sites in Cambridge and Somerville as well as Fenway Park and CHA Malden. For more information, click here. To register for a ride, call SCES at 617-628-2601 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- All MassHealth members or Health Safety Net patients can get free transportation to COVID-19 vaccine appointments. You can request transportation for a scheduled appointment by calling (800) 841-2900. You may find additional information on transportation help here.
Don’t forget to book your second appointment while you’re getting your first dose!
Massachusetts is currently in Phase Three of the vaccine rollout. Everyone age 12 and older is eligible for a vaccine. For more details and updates on vaccination priorities, please visit mass.gov/CovidVaccine.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has a Frequently Asked Questions site that is continually updated as they receive new questions. You may access the FAQs here. Questions can be submitted to COVID-19-Vaccine-Plan-MA@mass.gov.
Governor Baker did not hold a press conference today. Many of the Governor’s recent updates are available at mass.gov/governor-updates.
Today’s Case Count
Total Cases: 664,575
New Cases: 169
Total Deaths: 17,646
Total Cases: 6,086
New Cases: 5
Total Deaths: 123
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.
July Schedule for Cambridge COVID Testing
As of July 1, the City of Cambridge is offering free COVID-19 testing 1 day per week – on Thursdays between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. – inside the CambridgeSide Mall. Testing is located on the 2nd Floor above the Food Court. Free parking is available in the lower-level of the garage; entrance located on CambridgeSide Place.
Learn more at https://www.cambridgema.gov/covid19/Testing
Mental Health Services and Resources
If you or a loved one are struggling, please know that you are not alone. Here are some great resources:
Helpline for People Who Abuse
There is a Helpline for People Who Abuse that came out of CARES ACT funding for COVID-19. The Helpline is currently open to any resident of western Massachusetts, however they plan to expand to more residents within the Commonwealth. This helpline is the first in the nation of its kind, and is based out of Western Massachusetts. You can find more information here.
Where to Give
On Fridays, Cambridge CoHousing will be collecting food either in a paper bag or small box for the Chelsea Food Collaborative. Drop off is between 9 AM and 2:30 PM at the entrance to CoHousing at 175 Richdale Avenue, Cambridge, MA. If you don’t see someone at the moment you arrive, please leave it just inside the gate where we will have boxes marked “For Chelsea.”
Transition House in Need of Emergency Donations:
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
- Daily Table
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.