I write to you this evening with relevant COVID-19 updates and resources.
Accessibility at Mass Vaccination Sites in MA
The mass vaccination sites across the Commonwealth have accessible parking, wheelchairs, and dedicated staff on site to help get individuals to their appointment. Learn more about all locations here.
Trust the Facts. Get the Vax.
The Trust the Facts. Get the Vax. campaign by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health addresses the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine. Learn more here.
Northeastern is the First MA School To Require Vaccinations
Northeastern University announced that students must provide proof of a COVID vaccination before the first day of class in the fall. Read more here.
Nationwide and Federal Updates
Biden Will Ask States to Make All Adults Vaccine Eligible by April 19
President Biden is expected to announce today that he is moving the deadline for states to open up COVID-19 vaccinations to all adults to April 19. He had originally directed states to expand eligibility to all adults by May 1. The White House says that nearly a quarter of American adults are fully vaccinated. Read more here.
AstraZeneca’s COVID Vaccine Linked to Rare Blood Clots
A top vaccine official at the European Medicines Agency shared that AstraZeneca’s COVID vaccine was linked to blood clots in a small number of individuals. These clots may be an extremely rare side effect of the vaccine. Read more here.
Updated CDC Guidance on Cleaning and Disinfecting
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated its guidance on cleaning to prevent transmission of COVID-19. Disinfection at home is likely not needed unless someone in your home is sick or if someone who is positive for COVID-19 has been in your home within the last 24 hours. Learn more on how to disinfect your home with this helpful guide from the CDC here.
MA Vaccination Updates
Vaccine Eligibility Expanded
As of yesterday, Monday, April 5, 2021, individuals age 55 and older and individuals with one comorbidity will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. Eligible conditions include:
Chronic kidney disease
Sickle cell disease
Type 1 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes
On Monday, April 19, 2021, the general public age 16 and older will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Preparing for your Vaccination Appointment
Learn about how you can prepare for your vaccination appointment here
Resources for Booking and Getting to Your Appointment
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.” This multilingual service is for residents who don’t have Internet access or have trouble using the Internet.
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. You can also visit macovidvaxhelp.com, which is an unofficial site staffed by volunteers for eligible individuals who are unable to book vaccine appointments on their own.
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.
The City of Cambridge has published accessibility information for the state’s mass vaccination sites. You can find it here.
Don’t forget to book your second appointment while you’re getting your first dose!
The City’s next Safe Street, Safe City Meeting will take place tonight, April 6, 2021 at 7:00 PM. It will update the public on the recent gun-related violence in our community, and it is a continuation of the City’s efforts to bring together area stakeholders to determine what steps must be taken to decrease opportunities for violence in our city. All members of the public are welcome to attend and the meeting will be recorded to allow for future viewings. Register here.
Youth Mental Health Mini-Grants Available
The Cambridge Public Health Department will award six $1,000 mini-grants to support projects promoting youth mental health and wellness in Cambridge. Applications are due Tuesday, April 20, 2021. For more information and to apply, go to bit.ly/3u3pEWX.
Virtual Candidate Forums for Interim Superintendent Finalists
The Cambridge School Committee is hosting Virtual Candidate Forums between 5:00 and 8:00 PM next Thursday, April 8, 2021 for the three finalists for the position of Interim Superintendent of Schools. Panels of students, family representatives, and educational staff will ask questions of the finalists. Members of the community can watch the forums live via Zoom. Read more here.
Council on Aging Homebound Vaccination Program
The homebound vaccination program is for people who would not otherwise be able to receive the COVID-19 vaccine unless they receive it in their home. It does not include individuals who are temporarily homebound; and/or able to leave the home with adequate assistance; or those who would prefer to get a vaccine in their home. If you meet the definition for homebound, or know someone who does, please call the Cambridge Council on Aging (CoA) at 617-349-6220. Learn more here.
Today, Governor Baker shared his experience receiving the COVID vaccine at the Hynes Convention Center mass vaccination site. The Governor also stated that there are over 300 public vaccination sites across the Commonwealth and that an additional 1 million people are eligible to get vaccinated as of this week.
This week, 90% of elementary schools across the Commonwealth that have been remote only have returned in-person in the classroom.
If you or a loved one are struggling, please know that you are not alone. Here are some great resources:
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 Ave, 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."