STOP THE SPREAD TESTING SITES EXTENDED TESTING THROUGH OCT. 31ST
WALK UP COVID-19 Testing Site in Holyoke
A new walk-up COVID testing site opened in Holyoke at 323 Appleton St. Testing hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 2pm to 6pm. Testing will run until 10/31/20.
DRIVE UP COVID-19 Testing Site in Holyoke
A Stop the Spread test has opened at Holyoke Community College. Testing will run until 10/31/20.
– The site will operate Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 7am – 11am. Tuesday and Thursday 2pm -7pm.
– Turnaround time for results is typically 4 days or fewer.
– This test site is first come, first serve. There are no appointments. Please do not call the Health Department or Holyoke Community College to make an appointment.
– The test site at Holyoke Community College is a drive-through only test site. Please do not get out of your vehicle. Signage and Campus Police will be readily apparent to help you access the site easily.
– To help speed up the process, please have your information ready. They will ask for your full name, address (you must be a Massachusetts resident), phone number and email address.
– There is no cost for the testing. You do not need a referral, nor do you need to be symptomatic.
– The test style will be the less invasive swab in the lower nostril. The older style that required further insertion of the swab will not be used.
– If you have previously tested positive, DPH and CDC guidelines do not recommend getting retested at this time.
– If you are acutely symptomatic, particularly if you have a high fever, consider scheduling a test with your Primary Care Physician.
– Information on all of the Stop the Spread test sites across the State can be found at: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/stop-the-spread
New indoor guidelines for Massachusetts restaurants in effect
Massachusetts’ COVID-19 regulations now allow more people to share a table at restaurants and bar seating will be permitted for food service use.
Gov. Charlie Baker emphasized that bars remain closed in the state but said the space can be used for dining customers, as long as the other restaurant safety guidelines are followed. Massachusetts rules require customers who order drinks to also order food. “Bars are closed. Nightclubs are closed. But the evidence from other states with respect to this issue are clear. Restaurants can use bar seating for regular food service with appropriate distance in place,” Baker said. Read the full story here: https://www.wcvb.com/article/relaxed-restaurant-rules-in-massachusetts-go-into-effect-september-28-2020/34183594#
For the full list of updated sector specific workplace safety standards for restaurants click here: https://www.mass.gov/doc/sector-specific-workplace-safety-standards-phase-iii-step-1-for-restaurants-to-address-covid-0/download
MA Health Officials On Guard As Coronavirus Case Count Creeps Up
MASSACHUSETTS —After weeks of steady declines in coronavirus cases, Massachusetts has seen an increase in recent days, recording 515 new confirmed COVID-19 cases Saturday and prompting state health officials to acknowledge the numbers are heading in the wrong direction.
Some of the increase can be attributed to comprehensive testing at colleges and universities in Massachusetts, most of which welcomed students back late last month, Tory Mazzola, a spokesman for the state’s COVID-19 Command Center, said in a statement. But, with the state set to ease some restrictions on restaurants on Monday, Mazzola said officials are closely watching town-by-town case counts. While Gov. Baker on Wednesday announced eased restaurant restrictions in the state that include increasing the maximum at a table from six to 10 people, and allowing bar seating for customers ordering food, some towns and cities — including Boston — are opting to keep the tighter restrictions in place. Read the full story here: https://patch.com/massachusetts/boston/ma-health-officials-guard-coronavirus-case-count-creeps
As of today there are currently 1129 positive COVID cases in Holyoke < 1% increase
Weekly Public Health Report (Updated Wednesday) Contains town-by-town numbers, long-term care facility information, and more: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-response-reporting#covid-19-weekly-public-health-report-
Massachusetts comprehensive daily “dashboard” illustrating the spread of this virus across regions and demographics: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-response-reporting#covid-19-daily-dashboard-
Testing has a turnaround time of 1-5 days and many cases are being clinically diagnosed (no testing or reporting involved). All are advised to behave as though they are carriers of Covid-19.
The curve we need to flatten: County numbers graphed over time can be found here: https://www.wmasscovid.com/
Massachusetts has now experienced a total of 9,202 deaths among the 128,793 confirmed Covid-19 cases.