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Posts Tagged ‘COVID19’

We are seeing a massive uptick in discarded PPE littering our streets and grocery store parking lots. Please do your part to make it easier for essential workers and neighbors by properly disposing of masks and gloves in trash receptacles.

As always, we encourage everyone to stay home whenever possible, practice physical distancing and wear face coverings outside the house, wash your hands, and clean and disinfect surfaces.

 

The weekly BPHC report shows the positive cases breakdown by neighborhood and reflect a 46% increase in cases. Today’s dashboard from the State can be found here. Below are the most recent updates from the Mayor’s Office.

 

COVID-19 CASES

INCREASING TESTING ACCESS 

UNIVERSAL TESTING FOR HOMELESS POPULATION

GUIDANCE FOR RESTAURANTS ON SALE OF GROCERIES

APPOINTMENT OF NEW FIRE COMMISSIONER

ZONING BOARD OF APPEAL MAY 5TH HEARING CANCELED

LOVE YOUR BLOCK SPRING CLEAN UPS CANCELED

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS 

CONSTRUCTION

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

HELP COVID-19 EFFORTS

STAY INFORMED

 

COVID-19 CASES

The City of Boston has 7,617 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 1,426 of these 7,617 residents have fully recovered. There have been 259 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents. 

 

We urge everyone to stay home, avoid contact with others and observe the recommended curfew of 9pm-6am. If you must go outside for an essential task, we urge you to wear a face covering and stay 6ft away from others. Make sure to wash your hands often and clean and sanitize high-contact surfaces frequently. 

 

The City posts race and ethnicity data for deaths, as well as for confirmed cases on boston.gov/coronavirus. As of yesterday, the data shows that of the 193 deaths in Boston, where race is known, 44% are white, 31% are black, 10% are Asian or Pacific Islander, 12% are Latino, and 4% are identified as other. The City of Boston’s COVID-19 Health Inequities Task Force meets regularly. They are identifying key strategies to address inequities including expanded testng, data sharing and analysis, and strengthening neighborhood outreach.

 

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

 

Massachusetts has 50,969 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 2,556 deaths reported at this time. Massachusetts has also tested 215,213 individuals to date. 

 

The City of Boston has two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.  View them here.

 

The City of Boston has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 888-777 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service which was available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese, now includes Somali, Chinese, Arabic, Vietnamese and Russian.

  • Text BOSEspanol to 888-777 for Spanish

  • Text BOSKreyol to 888-777 for Haitian Kreyol

  • Text BOSFrancais to 888-777 for French

  • Text BOSKriolu to 888-777 for Cabo Verdean Creole

  • Text BOSPortugues to 888-777 for Portuguese

  • Text BOSSoomali to 888-777 for Somali

  • Text BOSChi to 888-777 for Simplified Chinese

  • Text BOSbilAraby to 888-777 for Arabic

  • Text BOSViet to 888-777 for Vietnamese

  • Text BOSRus to 888-777 for Russian

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide. 

 

INCREASING TESTING ACCESS

On April 24nd, Mayor Walsh reiterated that increased testing for COVID-19 is a City of Boston priority. Testing helps us better understand how many people are infected and where; allows us to direct medical resources more efficiently and equitably; tells us more about how the virus behaves and what we can expect moving forward; and is necessary before steps can be taken toward reopening and recovery. The Mayor also provided an update on our work expanding testing access in Boston.

  • The Boston Resiliency Fund has used over $760,000 to expand testing at nine community health centers in East Boston, Dorchester, Mattapan, and Roxbury.  

  • We’ve granted an additional $270,000 for telehealth services and equipment at those community health centers to connect testing to treatment options. 

  • We now have 15 testing sites in the City of Boston. That includes 10 operated by community health centers and 5 operated by hospitals. A map of testing sites and contact information is available at boston.gov/coronavirus. Residents are reminded to call ahead for pre-screening and to schedule an appointment. 

  • The Boston Public Health Commission is now sharing testing data at the neighborhood level. 

  • In the last week, we’ve had a 30% increase in the amount of testing citywide, and larger increases in the areas hardest hit by infection. 

    • Hyde Park has had a 57% increase in testing.

    • Mattapan has had a 35% increase in testing. 

    • The hardest-hit zip codes in Dorchester saw a 37% increase in testing.  

  • The goal is for every community health center to provide testing for residents. 

  • Testing is free and you will not be asked about your immigration status at a testing site.

UNIVERSAL TESTING FOR HOMELESS POPULATION

On April 24th, Mayor Walsh announced that the City of Boston will move forward with universal testing for COVID-19 for all unhoused individuals in Boston.

  • As of yesterday, 1,340 shelter guests have been tested. Roughly one third of those have tested positive. 

  • The City of Boston has secured 1,000 additional tests, which will allow universal testing for guests in our shelter system, in addition to some shelter staff.

  • The tests are being donated by a Boston company called Orig3n. 

  • The testing will be done over the next two weeks, led by Boston Health Care for the Homeless in coordination with the Boston Public Health Commission, St. Francis House, and the Pine Street Inn. 

  • Individuals who test positive will receive the care and support they need to recover. 

  • Individuals who test negative will be placed in designated areas to allow for better physical distancing to prevent transmission.

 

GUIDANCE FOR RESTAURANTS ON SALE OF GROCERIES

On April 24th, Mayor Walsh announced the City of Boston will allow permitted restaurants to sell grocery items via delivery, curbside pickup, and takeout by waiving the required Retail Food Permit for the sale of uncooked foods. 

  • The new temporary policy and guidance formed by the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development, the Inspectional Services Department, and the Licensing Board for the City of Boston will improve access to food and essential items for residents, and help ensure social distancing guidelines continue to be upheld.

  • Restaurants that want to start selling groceries must follow strict food safety guidelines. 

  • They will also need to follow clear guidelines for packaging and labeling foods. 

  • Restaurants will still be required to limit occupancy to 10 people at any time, and maintain physical distancing, with at least 6 feet in between all staff and customers. 

  • More information at Boston.gov/coronavirus 

APPOINTMENT OF NEW FIRE COMMISSIONER

On April 24th, Mayor Walsh announced he has appointed John Dempsey to the permanent post of Fire Commissioner for the City of Boston.

  • Commissioner Dempsey is a 35-year veteran of the Boston Fire Department who has risen through the ranks of leadership. He was appointed to the interim position in early March, just before the acceleration of the coronavirus outbreak. 

  • The Mayor noted that Commissioner Dempsey has approached this unprecedented crisis with professionalism and decisiveness. By quickly implementing safety protocols, cleaning upgrades, and Personal Protective Equipment, he has kept firefighters safe and the Department fully operational in serving the people of Boston.

 

ZONING BOARD OF APPEAL MAY 5TH HEARING CANCELED

Please be advised that the Zoning Board of Appeal May 5th hearing date has been postponed due to the ongoing COVID19 Public Health Emergency

  • New hearing date will be June 30th, 2020 at 11:30am. The public notice and agenda may be found here

  • Public access to the Inspectional Services Dept offices at 1010 Massachusetts Ave is restricted to appointment only. 

  • Applicants requesting relief of the zoning or building code, or anyone inquiring about upcoming hearings, should email ISDBoardOfAppeal@boston.gov or call 617-635-4775.

 

LOVE YOUR BLOCK SPRING CLEAN UPS CANCELED

Due to the on-going public health emergency, the annual Love Your Block Spring Clean Ups scheduled for May 2nd and May 16th have been canceled.

  • Love Your Block neighborhood clean ups are a time honored tradition of sprucing up our front steps, local parks, bonding with neighbors and giving back to our community. 

  • Each year hundreds of residents from different civic groups in every neighborhood across Boston participate in the program.

  • We will share details about a new date in the Fall once we’ve been able to reschedule. 

 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

  • City Hall is open to the public only on Tuesdays and Fridays from 9 am.to 5 pm

  • Public access to 1010 Massachusetts Avenue is limited to the Boston Public Health Commission on the 2nd Floor and residents must be accompanied when entering the building. 

  • Everyone entering City Hall, including employees and members of the public, will be required to complete a self-screening for COVID-19 symptoms, including elevated temperature.

  • Residents are required to make appointments if they need to visit any of the essential services offered out of City Hall, and can learn more about the status of city departments and hours of operation here. 

 

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

 

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

Boston Public Schools will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. 

  • BPS has been making plans to expand at-home learning opportunities, and will be sharing more information about this next phase of remote learning after April vacation.

  • Boston Public Schools has issued a needs assessment survey to all students in the district. Families should respond to the survey to help us determine how to better support them throughout the school closure. The survey is available in 10 different languages. 

  • The City of Boston is continuing to operate meal pick-up sites and providing Chromebooks and WiFi hotspots. Every day, we are distributing thousands of free meals at 65 locations across the City, and making home deliveries for students with severe special needs. 

  • More information about how we’re supporting Boston Public School families can be found here.

 

Meal Distribution sites near Fenway, Kenmore, and Mission Hill include the following:

 
BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM 
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur 
— 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

 

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Additional information can be found here

 

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

 

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

  • Stay home. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.

  • Wear a face covering if you absolutely must go outside. Face covers help reduce the risk of a person spreading the virus, especially if they are asymptomatic. Visit CDC guidelines on face coverings for more information and guidance. 

  • Observe the recommended curfew for everyone in Boston except for essential workers to stay at home from 9 pm to 6 am daily 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050. Buoy Health has created a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19 at buoy.com/mass.

  • Donate supplies to first responders here

  • Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here

  • Volunteer with the City of Boston here 

  • For Food access needs, visit our Food Resources Map or call 3-1-1

  • Fill out the 2020 Census. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted. 

 

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

 

We will keep you informed as we receive updates. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Read Full Post »

Please find the most up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 from The City of Boston.

 

With surge trends in Massachusetts growing, the State has released a COVID-19 Dashboard which tracks the daily and cumulative confirmed cases; cases by hospital, county, and age/sex/ethnicity; testing by date; hospital capacity; nursing home data; and PPE distribution. You may access today’s dashboard here.

 

We urge everyone to take the public health guidelines of physical distancing seriously and encourage you to share accurate information with neighbors. Below are the most recent updates from the Mayor’s Office. 

 

COVID-19 CASES

SOCIAL DISTANCING IN PUBLIC SPACES

TESTING ACCESS MAP 

FOOD RESOURCES FOR ALL RESIDENTS

STATE OF MA UPDATES

UPDATE ON PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT

RESPONSE TO RECENT ACTS OF VIOLENCE

UPDATE ON BOSTON HOPE MEDICAL CENTER

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS

CONSTRUCTION

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

HELP COVID-19 EFFORTS

STAY INFORMED

 

COVID-19 CASES

The City of Boston has 5,749 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 1,044 of these 5,749 residents have fully recovered. There have been 187 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents. 

 

We urge everyone to stay home, avoid contact with others and observe the recommended curfew of 9pm-6am. If you must go outside for an essential task, we urge you to wear a face covering and stay 6ft away from others. Make sure to wash your hands often and clean and sanitize high-contact surfaces frequently. 

 

The City posts race and ethnicity data for deaths, as well as for confirmed cases on boston.gov/coronavirus. As of yesterday, the data shows that of the 142 deaths in Boston, where race is known, 41% are white, 30% are black, 12% are Asian or Pacific Islander, 11% are Latino, and 6% are identified as other. The City of Boston’s COVID-19 Health Inequities Task Force meets regularly. They are identifying key strategies to address inequities including expanded testng, data sharing and analysis, and strengthening neighborhood outreach.

 

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

 

Massachusetts has 39,643 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 1,809 deaths reported at this time. Massachusetts has also tested 169,398 individuals to date. 

 

The City of Boston has two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.  View them here.

 

The City of Boston has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 888-777 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service which was available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese, now includes Somali, Chinese, Arabic, Vietnamese and Russian.

  • Text BOSEspanol to 888-777 for Spanish

  • Text BOSKreyol to 888-777 for Haitian Kreyol

  • Text BOSFrancais to 888-777 for French

  • Text BOSKriolu to 888-777 for Cabo Verdean Creole

  • Text BOSPortugues to 888-777 for Portuguese

  • Text BOSSoomali to 888-777 for Somali

  • Text BOSChi to 888-777 for Simplified Chinese

  • Text BOSbilAraby to 888-777 for Arabic

  • Text BOSViet to 888-777 for Vietnamese

  • Text BOSRus to 888-777 for Russian

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide. 

 

SOCIAL DISTANCING IN PUBLIC SPACES

Mayor urges everyone to continue social and physical distancing, especially in public spaces.

  • Yesterday, groups were playing golf at the Devine Golf Course at Franklin Park and the George Wright course in Hyde Park even though the courses are closed. Boston Police had to come and tell them to leave. The City will not hesitate to send police officers to deliver the message and, if necessary, deliver citations.

  • Please stay home and avoid contact with others. Respect the recommended curfew from 9pm to 6am. Wear a face covering whenever you leave home. Stay at least six feet from other people at all times. Wash your hands frequently. Clean and sanitize surfaces frequently.

TESTING ACCESS MAP

The City of Boston has been working with hospitals and community health centers across the city to create and expand testing sites.

  • We created a Testing Access Map to make it easier for residents to find and contact a testing site near them. It includes locations, hours, and phone numbers and websites of testing locations. It will be updated as new testing sites come online. The goal is to have every community health center able to provide testing to residents in the neighborhood. 

  • Starting today, we will be able to start sharing data on testing at the neighborhood level. New reports will include the number of people tested, and positive testing rates, for each neighborhood.

 

FOOD RESOURCES FOR ALL RESIDENTS

  • All of our 65 youth meal sites remain open during April school vacation week. After Friday’s distribution, we have served a total of 438,000 meals since schools closed.

  • Starting today, we have opened 6 new meal sites, in East Boston, Dorchester, South Boston, Roxbury, Mattapan, and Brighton, that will serve all residents. They can each serve up to 2,500 meals a day. 

  • For hours and locations, visit our Food Resources Map or call 3-1-1.

 

STATE OF MA UPDATES

On April 20th, Governor Baker announced that residents who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits can now apply for the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program. 

  • The PUA program provides up to 39 weeks of unemployment benefits for those who are unable to work because of COVID-19 but are not eligible for regular or extended unemployment benefits. That includes self-employed workers, independent contractors, gig economy workers, and those with limited work history.

  • To be eligible for this new program, individuals must provide self-certification that they are otherwise able and available to work but are prevented from doing so by circumstances relating to COVID-19, including their own illness or that of a family member.

  • Visit www.mass.gov/pua
 for additional info

 

UPDATE ON PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT

Batelle and Partners Health have given the City of Boston access to the decontamination facility in Somerville. 

  • It will take pressure off sourcing PPE for police, fire, and EMS, as well as in the larger system of supply chains that the medical system is drawing on. 

  • Starting today, we’ve begun a program of decontaminating N95 masks used by first responders.

 

RESPONSE TO RECENT ACTS OF VIOLENCE

This past week, there have been multiple terrible acts of violence involving young people. The City of Boston is doing everything it can to ensure this is not a trend. 

  • Mayor Walsh urges everyone to do their part to keep their community safe, including following the City’s curfew and guidelines. 

  • The Office of Public Safety is working on intervention plans with trauma teams, street workers, clergy and community leaders, and the Boston Police Department. 

 

UPDATE ON BOSTON HOPE MEDICAL CENTER 

Boston Hope Medical Center at the BCEC has a capacity of 1,000 beds. 

  • As of Sunday (4/19) night, there were 162 total patients being treated, including 86 on the hospital side and 76 on the respite side for homeless individuals. In all, Boston Hope has served over 250 patients. 

  • Because of the City’s ongoing work and the support of partnerships at Boston Hope and other facilities across the City, Boston has the capacity to shelter and treat every single homeless individual safely.

 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

  • City Hall is open to the public only on Tuesdays and Fridays from 9 am.to 5 pm

  • Public access to 1010 Massachusetts Avenue is limited to the Boston Public Health Commission on the 2nd Floor and residents must be accompanied when entering the building. 

  • Everyone entering City Hall, including employees and members of the public, will be required to complete a self-screening for COVID-19 symptoms, including elevated temperature.

  • Residents are required to make appointments if they need to visit any of the essential services offered out of City Hall, and can learn more about the status of city departments and hours of operation here. 

 

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

 

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

Boston Public Schools has issued a needs assessment survey to all students in the district. Families should respond to the survey to help us determine how to better support them throughout the school closure. The survey is available in 10 different languages. 

 

As of April 18th, Boston Public Schools has distributed 29,000 Chromebooks to students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home.

 

The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, has served over 438,000 meals since schools have closed. BPS is also delivering meals to the homes of students with special needs.

 

Free breakfast and lunch will be provided throughout the school closure including on April 20th (Patriots’ Day) and April 21st-24th (April vacation)

 

Meal Distribution sites near Fenway, Kenmore, and Mission Hill include the following:

 
BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM 
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur 
— 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

 

More information about how we’re supporting Boston Public School families can be found here.

 

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Additional information can be found here

 

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

 

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

  • Stay home. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.

  • Wear a face covering if you absolutely must go outside. Face covers help reduce the risk of a person spreading the virus, especially if they are asymptomatic. Visit CDC guidelines on face coverings for more information and guidance. 

  • Observe the recommended curfew for everyone in Boston except for essential workers to stay at home from 9 pm to 6 am daily 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050. Buoy Health has created a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19 at buoy.com/mass.

  • Donate supplies to first responders here

  • Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here

  • Volunteer with the City of Boston here 

  • Fill out the 2020 Census. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted. 

 

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

 

We will keep you informed as we receive updates. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Read Full Post »

Please find the latest updates from the City regarding COVID19.

COVID-19 CASES

ONE BOSTON DAY OBSERVANCES 

FIRST RESPONDERS CAVALCADE (TONIGHT AT 7:30PM)

NEW TESTING SITES

BOSTON RESILIENCY FUND UPDATE AND OTHER CONTRIBUTIONS 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS

CONSTRUCTION

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

HELP COVID-19 EFFORTS

STAY INFORMED

 

COVID-19 CASES

The City of Boston has 4,528 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 616 of these 4,528 residents have fully recovered. There have been 105 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents. 

 

We urge everyone to stay home, avoid contact with others and observe the recommended curfew of 9pm-6am. If you must go outside for an essential task, we urge you to wear a face covering and stay 6ft away from others. Make sure to wash your hands often and clean and sanitize high-contact surfaces frequently. 

 

Starting today, the City will post race and ethnicity data for deaths, as well as for confirmed cases on boston.gov/coronavirus. As of yesterday, the data shows that of the 84 deaths in Boston, where race is known, 33% are white, 29% are black, 15% are Asian or Pacific Islander, 14% are Latino, and 9% are identified as other.

 

The COVID-19 Health Inequities Task Force meets regularly. They are identifying key strategies to address inequities including expanded testng, data sharing and analysis, and strengthening neighborhood outreach. We are currently working with the Task Force on a webinar about COVID-19 in Haitian Creole. This is one of several efforts which allows us to reach more people, in more communities, and in more languages.

 

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

 

Massachusetts has 29,918 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 1,108 deaths reported at this time. Massachusetts has also tested 132,023 individuals to date. 

 

The City of Boston has two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.  View them here.

 

The City of Boston has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 99411 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service is also available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese. 

  • Text BOSEspanol for Spanish

  • Text BOSKreyol for Haitian Kreyol

  • Text BOSFrancais for French

  • Text BOSKriolu for Cabo Verdean Creole

  • Text BOSPortugues for Portuguese

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide. 

 

ONE BOSTON DAY OBSERVANCES

Today is the 7th anniversary of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. It also marks the 6th annual One Boston Day, a citywide day of reflection and service. 

  • Mayor Walsh proclaimed April 15, 2020, a Citywide day of reflection, prayer, and unity. We hosted an interfaith prayer service online at 2pm

  • At 2:49 pm, the time the first bomb exploded on Marathon Monday in 2013, Old South Church rang its bells in honor of those we lost.

  • We ask that you stay home for our first responders, medical workers and other front line employees who cannot. If you must go out, it’s important to wear a face covering every time you leave the house. 

  • We encourage you to spread goodwill through acts of kindness you can safely do from home, and invite you to share your reflections on the meaning of One Boston Day on social media with the hashtag #OneBostonDay.

 

FIRST RESPONDERS CAVALCADE

Tonight at 7:30pm, the Boston Police will lead a cavalcade to commemorate the anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombings. 

  • The cavalcade will be led by Mobile Operations Patrol and will consist of police, fire and EMS in an effort to honor our first responders and medical personnel.

  • Route will begin at BPD Headquarters and will travel past the following hospitals: Boston Medical Center, Tufts, Mass General Hospital, St Elizabeth’s, Beth Israel Deaconess, Children’s, Brigham & Women’s and the Carney.

    • Right Prentiss St, right Parker St, right Ruggles St, left Tremont St, right Melnea Cass Blvd, left Albany St, left Mass. Ave, (BMC), right Washington St, (Tufts), left on Stuart St, right on Charles St South, to Charles St, right on Beacon St, left on Bowdoin St, left on Cambridge St, right on North Grove St, (MGH), right on Parkman St, right on Blossom St, right Cambridge St, into Charles Cir. onto Charles St, right Beacon St, stay right to Commonwealth Ave, onto Brighton Ave, left on Cambridge St, left Washington St, (St Elizabeth’s), left on Commonwealth Ave, right on Brookline Ave, (BIDMC), left on Longwood Ave right into Children’s Hospital turnaround, right back onto Longwood Ave, right on Huntington Ave, right on Francis St, (BW), left on Brookline Ave, left on Riverway to Jamaica Way to Arborway to Morton St, left to Gallivan Blvd, right Dorchester Ave (Carney).

 

NEW TESTING SITES

  • This week, Whittier Street Health Center in Roxbury began offering expanded scheduled testing to all. Please visit wshc.org for more info

  • On Friday, the City of Boston will expand service at our testing site for first responders in East Boston to serve residents, as well.

  • Codman Square Health Center in Dorchester will have expanded access to testing by this weekend.  

  • In the coming days, Brigham and Women’s Hospital will expand services at their Hyde Park primary care site. They will be offering screening and testing, as well as other supports for people who are impacted by the coronavirus. Brigham and Women’s will also deploy resources to other high-risk communities in the weeks to come, responding to data about where testing is needed, and helping to prevent new hotspots from emerging in the future.

  • Buoy Health has a free online screening resource, accessible at buoy.com/mass. This tool can help determine if you need to see a healthcare provider, and they can connect you to telehealth resources that are fully covered by health insurance.

 

BOSTON RESILIENCY FUND UPDATE AND OTHER CONTRIBUTIONS 

Mayor Walsh announced that the Boston Resiliency Fund raised over $25 million in one month, with $12 million already out the door to local organizations.

  • Today we announced $1.7 million in new grants through the Boston Resiliency Fund.

  • Latest grants will allow six more community health centers to expand testing: Mattapan; Whittier Street; Bowdoin Street; Codman Square; Uphams Corner; and DotHouse Health.

  • Other grantees include: all of the family shelters in Boston; St. Francis House; RIZE Massachusetts; The Dimock; Elevate Boston and Families for Justice as Healing; Brazilian Worker Center; Urban Guild; Mujeres Unidas Avanzando; Boston Girls Empowerment Network; Project RIGHT; Voice of Tabernacle; and Mothers for Justice and Equality.

  • The MAPFRE Foundation has committed to donating $500,000 to the City of Boston. We will use this money to buy critical supplies for medical professionals and first responders.

  • Liberty Mutual has committed $15 million in grants to Boston nonprofits. The first installment will include $1 million each for BMC, Pine Street Inn, and Boston Healthcare for the Homeless; and $500,000 each to St. Francis House, Friends of Boston’s Homeless, and the Greater Boston Food Bank. This is in addition to $1 million that Liberty Mutual contributed to the Boston Resiliency Fund.

  • We continue to accept donations at Boston.gov/BostonResiliencyFund.

 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

  • City Hall is open to the public only on Tuesdays and Fridays from 9 am.to 5 pm

  • Public access to 1010 Massachusetts Avenue is limited to the Boston Public Health Commission on the 2nd Floor and residents must be accompanied when entering the building. 

  • Everyone entering City Hall, including employees and members of the public, will be required to complete a self-screening for COVID-19 symptoms, including elevated temperature.

  • Residents are required to make appointments if they need to visit any of the essential services offered out of City Hall, and can learn more about the status of city departments and hours of operation here. 

 

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

 

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

Boston Public Schools has issued a needs assessment survey to all students in the district. Families should respond to the survey to help us determine how to better support them throughout the school closure. The survey is available in 10 different languages. 

 

As of April 13th, Boston Public Schools has distributed 28,000 Chromebooks to students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home.

 

The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, has served over 161,000 meals since schools have closed, averaging 13,000 meals per day.

 

Free breakfast and lunch will be provided throughout the school closure including on April 20th (Patriots’ Day) and April 21st-24th (April vacation)

 

Meal Distribution sites near Fenway, Kenmore, and Mission Hill include the following:

 
BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM 
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur 
— 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

 

More information about how we’re supporting Boston Public School families can be found here.

 

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Additional information can be found here

 

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

 

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

  • Stay home. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.

  • Wear a face covering if you absolutely must go outside. Face covers help reduce the risk of a person spreading the virus, especially if they are asymptomatic. Visit CDC guidelines on face coverings for more information and guidance. 

  • Observe the recommended curfew for everyone in Boston except for essential workers to stay at home from 9 pm to 6 am daily 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050. Buoy Health has created a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19 at buoy.com/mass.

  • Donate supplies to first responders here

  • Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here

  • Volunteer with the City of Boston here 

  • Fill out the 2020 Census. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted. 

 

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

 

We will keep you informed as we receive updates. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Read Full Post »

Here is the latest information regarding COVID19 in the City of Boston.

 

COVID-19 CASES

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

BOSTON HOPE AT BCEC UPDATE

COVID-19 HEALTH INEQUITIES TASK FORCE UPDATE

ACCESS TO SCREENING AND NEW TESTING SITE AT WHITTIER STREET HEALTH CENTER

FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR RESIDENTS AND SMALL BUSINESSES

ONE BOSTON DAY

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS

CONSTRUCTION

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

HELP COVID-19 EFFORTS

STAY INFORMED

 

COVID-19 CASES

The City of Boston has 4,086 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 489 of these 4,086 residents have fully recovered. There have been 69 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents. 

 

With positive cases more than doubling this past week, it is clear that Boston is in the midst of a surge. Public health modeling projects Massachusetts reaching its peak of cases at the end of April. We urge everyone to stay home, avoid contact with others and observe the recommended curfew of 9pm-6am. If you must go outside for an essential task, we urge you to wear a face covering and stay 6ft away from others. Make sure to wash your hands often and clean and sanitize high-contact surfaces frequently. 

 

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

 

Massachusetts has 26,867 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 844 deaths reported at this time. Massachusetts has also tested 122,049 individuals to date. 

 

The City of Boston has two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.  View them here.

 

The City of Boston has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 99411 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service is also available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese. 

  • Text BOSEspanol for Spanish

  • Text BOSKreyol for Haitian Kreyol

  • Text BOSFrancais for French

  • Text BOSKriolu for Cabo Verdean Creole

  • Text BOSPortugues for Portuguese

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide. 

 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID-19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

  • City Hall is open to the public only on Tuesdays and Fridays from 9 am.to 5 pm

  • Public access to 1010 Massachusetts Avenue is limited to the Boston Public Health Commission on the 2nd Floor and residents must be accompanied when entering the building. 

  • Everyone entering City Hall, including employees and members of the public, will be required to complete a self-screening for COVID-19 symptoms, including elevated temperature.

  • Residents are required to make appointments if they need to visit any of the essential services offered out of City Hall, and can learn more about the status of city departments and hours of operation here. 

 

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

 

BOSTON HOPE AT BCEC UPDATE

  • The Boston Hope Medical Center at BCEC opened this past weekend. The facility has a total of 1,000 beds, including 500 for homeless patients.

  • As of Sunday evening, we have 45 patients —  including 16 individuals 

  • Partners HealthCare is seeking help from care providers of all types: including registered nurses, advanced practice providers, physical and occupational therapists, pharmacists, and providers with experience in respiratory care. Visit partners.org/bostonhope for more info


 

COVID-19 HEALTH INEQUITIES TASK FORCE UPDATE

  • The City of Boston has been collecting and sharing race and ethnicity data for cases in Boston, and encouraging other jurisdictions to do the same. Those numbers are updated daily on Boston.gov/coronavirus

  • Mayor Walsh hosted the first meeting of Boston’s COVID-19 Health Inequities Task Force this past weekend. 

  • The Task Force is made up of community leaders of color including doctors, faith leaders, and heads of community health centers. A full list of members can be found here

  • At their first meeting, they identified priority areas, including: testing, data, community action, and understanding the economic impact.

 

ACCESS TO SCREENING AND NEW TESTING SITE AT WHITTIER STREET HEALTH CENTER

  • The City of Boston is working with the Whittier Street Health Center in Roxbury to help make testing more accessible to residents. 

    • Starting today, Whittier will be offering scheduled rapid result testing to all. 

    • Testing is by appointment only and patients must be at least 18 years of age. Please visit wshc.org for more info

  • Buoy Health has a free online screening resource, accessible at buoy.com/mass. This tool can help determine if you need to see a healthcare provider, and they can connect you to telehealth resources that are fully covered by health insurance.

 

FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR RESIDENTS AND SMALL BUSINESSES

  • The City of Boston created a Rental Relief Fund for tenants who fall behind on rent because of the crisis, and don’t have access to enough federal relief or unemployment benefits to make it up. The first round of funding closed on April 10th. The Department of Neighborhood Development will hold a lottery for over 5,500 applicants who qualified in this round. The goal is to distribute the funds by the end of the month. Boston residents can fill out a form at Boston.gov/rentalrelief to be contacted when the next round of funding is open.

  • The City of Boston is working with 13 of the largest housing lenders in Boston to prevent foreclosures on homeowners. These lenders have agreed to defer homeowners’ mortgage payments by 3 months. They also agreed not to charge late fees or report non-payment to credit bureaus. More info here

  • The City of Boston created a Small Business Relief Fund for local businesses at risk of shutting down permanently due to the crisis. We received almost 3,000 applications. While this round of funding has closed, we will make an announcement if and when more funds become available. Any business needing guidance can review the City’s Financial Relief Handbook or reach out to the Economic Development team at Boston.gov/smallbusiness.

 

ONE BOSTON DAY

Wednesday, April 15th is the 7th anniversary of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. It also marks the 6th annual One Boston Day, a citywide day of reflection and service. 

  • Mayor Walsh proclaimed April 15, 2020, a Citywide day of reflection, prayer, and unity. The City of Boston will share opportunities to connect online with Boston’s faith community, with secular organizations, and with our local arts community so that everyone has a chance to slow down, reflect, and share some meaningful time with their fellow Bostonians. 

  • The Mayor emphasized that this year’s One Boston Day is as important as ever. He urged neighbors to do everything they can to support their fellow Bostonians, especially through physical distancing and wearing a face covering every time they leave the house. 

  • We are calling on everyone to spread goodwill through acts of kindness you can safely do from home, and invite you to share your reflections on the meaning of One Boston Day on social media with the hashtag #OneBostonDay.

 

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

Boston Public Schools has issued a needs assessment survey to all students in the district. Families should respond to the survey to help us determine how to better support them throughout the school closure. The survey is available in 10 different languages. 

 

As of April 13th, Boston Public Schools has distributed 28,000 Chromebooks to students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home.

 

The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, has served over 161,000 meals since schools have closed, averaging 13,000 meals per day.

 

Free breakfast and lunch will be provided throughout the school closure including on April 20th (Patriots’ Day) and April 21st-24th (April vacation)

 

Meal Distribution sites near Fenway, Kenmore, and Mission Hill include the following:

 
BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM 
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur 
— 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

 

More information about how we’re supporting Boston Public School families can be found here.

 

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Additional information can be found here

 

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

 

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

  • Stay home. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.

  • Wear a face covering if you absolutely must go outside. Face covers help reduce the risk of a person spreading the virus, especially if they are asymptomatic. Visit CDC guidelines on face coverings for more information and guidance. 

  • Observe the recommended curfew for everyone in Boston except for essential workers to stay at home from 9 pm to 6 am daily 

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050. Buoy Health has created a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19 at buoy.com/mass.

  • Donate supplies to first responders here

  • Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here

  • Volunteer with the City of Boston here 

  • Fill out the 2020 Census. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted. 

 

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

 

We will keep you informed as we receive updates. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Read Full Post »

Mayor Walsh’s April 9 Press Briefing Recap

Please read the following update from the Age Strong Commission – we ask all residents to follow the outlined social distancing guidelines over the next two weeks.

Hope you and your loved ones are well. Today, Mayor Walsh held a press briefing about the City’s response to COVID-19. Below is a recap of those updates that we’ll be sharing with you regularly. As always, please visit www.boston.gov/coronavirus for up-to-date information, and direct older Bostonians to call 311 if they need access to support or resources.

Numbers:
  • As of Wednesday, April 8, in Massachusetts: 16,790 cases of coronavirus and 433 deaths. As of Thursday, April 9, in Boston: 2,812 cases, 325 recovered, 34 deaths. 

 

An update on the Boston Hope Medical Center (photos attached):
  • We expect to start bringing unsheltered individuals in need of care into the Boston Hope Medical Center (at the BCEC) as early as tomorrow. 
  • It has 1,000 beds for COVID-19 patients: 500 for homeless individuals and 500 for general hospital overflow. It includes 6 acute care suites; a physical therapy suite; 52 nurses stations and 48 bathroom facilities. 
  • The Center is a collaboration between the City, State, Partners HealthCare, Ascension, Boston Health Care for the Homeless, and others.
  • Partners is seeking healthcare providers and non-medical volunteers. See partners.org/bostonhope.

 

Temporary housing for front-line responders:
  • We have secured a total of 284 beds for first responders and shelter staff.
    • Northeastern University is providing 135 single-occupancy rooms in one of its dorms for Boston’s first responders who need to self-isolate.
    • Boston University is providing 75 rooms to homeless shelter staff who work at the Pine Street Inn. 
    • Hotel Boston in Brighton has 74 rooms available for members of Boston Police, Fire and EMS who have tested positive for COVID-19 or may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, and are unable to isolate at home.

       

Additional resources for healthcare workers:
  • Emmanuel College, MassArt, and Simmons University are making housing available for healthcare workers from Beth Israel, Brigham and Women’s, and Children’s Hospital.
  • MassArt, Wentworth, the MFA, Windsor, Emmanuel, Harvard, Simmons, and Boston Latin School have made over 1,100 parking spaces available for healthcare workers in the Longwood Medical Area.

     

Temporary housing for veterans:
  • The New England Center and Home for Veterans will move up to 50 veterans into a former nursing home facility in Brighton who are currently living in group settings. This will allow for better physical distancing during this public health crisis.

 

Preventing foreclosures:
  • We secured the agreement of 12 of the largest housing lenders in Boston to defer homeowners’ mortgage payments by 3 months, and longer if needed. 
  • They also agree to not charge late fees or report non-payment to credit bureaus. 
  • After the deferral period, homeowners will not be required to pay the deferred payments in one lump sum. They will be able to work with their lenders on a repayment plan.
  • Lenders should contact the Boston Home Center if they want to join the agreement. For a full list of lenders moving forward, go to Boston.gov/coronavirus. 

 

Addressing racial and ethnic inequities in the impact of COVID-19:
  • We’ve been working to collect as much data as possible about the race and ethnicity of patients in Boston to understand and address inequities, and we’ve asked the State and surrounding communities to do the same.
    • We are releasing the data on race and ethnicity available to us so far. It accounts for about 62% of total cases in Boston.
  • We created the COVID-19 Health Inequities Taskforce to examine data on health inequities and recommend interventions.
    • The Task Force will review data on the health inequities that face Black, Latino, and Asian populations in Boston. 
    • It will analyze data and best practices related to the COVID-19 response. 
    • It will strengthen our strategy for equity and accessibility in services. 
    • And it will provide recommendations for resources and strategies that the City can use moving forward.
    • Members will be announced later today.
  • We are also working with hospitals to receive any data that helps our understanding, and to partner with them on interventions to reduce inequities and anticipate future impacts to our communities.

 

Appeal for social distancing during Easter and Passover:
  • We are urging people to not travel and not to have family gatherings, especially this weekend. 
    • Many temples and churches are holding services online, and there are plenty of ways to connect with loved ones virtually.
  • We’re also asking people to respect requests from management of senior housing facilities. 
    • People are still visiting senior housing and assisted living communities, and should be social distancing and protecting our most vulnerable residents. 

 

Reminders about social/physical distancing: 
  • The City of Boston is asking community leaders, local organizations, and non-profit partners to push this message out to their networks.
  • Local data shows that distancing in the next two weeks are critical to flattening the curve and saving lives.
  • Residents should stay home and avoid contact with others; stay at least 6 feet from other people at all times; and wash their hands and clean and sanitize surfaces frequently. 
  • Everyone should wear a face covering when outside of their home 
  • The Boston Public Health Commission issued a Public Health Advisory recommending people stay inside between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. Use delivery services as much as possible getting food from a restaurant after 9 p.m. We have resources for restaurants that want to get set up with a delivery service. 
  • City Hall is open to the public on Tuesdays and Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Everyone entering the building will be subject to screening for COVID symptoms, including elevated temperature. People should only come in for services that are absolutely necessary, and not available by phone or online, and you must call ahead to make an appointment. City Hall will also be closed to the public this coming Friday, April 10, in observance of Good Friday.
 
Please also read this letter from Mayor Walsh to the Boston community that posted last night. We encourage you to share this information with your networks.

Thank you.

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Please read the announcement from the City of Boston here.

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COVID19 Updates from COB April 1, 2020

We have updates on the status of COVID19 from the City as of today:

COVID19 CASES

PHYSICAL DISTANCING NOW

HOMELESS SERVICES AND HOSPITAL CAPACITY

SMALL BUSINESS SUPPORT

HOUSING SUPPORT

VETERANS 

STATE OF MA UPDATES

LODGING LICENSED ESTABLISHMENTS

CITY OF BOSTON COVID19 OPERATIONS

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS

CONSTRUCTION

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

STAY INFORMED

 

COVID19 CASES

The City of Boston has 1,233 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 106 of these 1,233 residents have fully recovered. There have been 10 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents.

 

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

 

Massachusetts has 8,966 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 154 deaths reported at this time. 

 

The City of Boston has two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.  View them here.

 

The City of Boston has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 99411 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service is also available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese. 

  • Text BOSEspanol for Spanish

  • Text BOSKreyol for Haitian Kreyol

  • Text BOSFrancais for French

  • Text BOSKriolu for Cabo Verdean Creole

  • Text BOSPortugues for Portuguese

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide. 

 

PHYSICAL DISTANCING NOW

A surge in cases in Massachusetts is expected during the month of April, and the next few weeks will be critical in terms of physical distancing and slowing the spread of the virus as much as possible. Residents are urged to stay home and avoid contact with others whenever they can, stay at least 6 feet from other people at all times, and wash their hands and clean and sanitize surfaces frequently. Mayor Walsh is asking everyone to do their part so we can mitigate the impact of the expected surge. Please help the City of Boston communicate this critical message to friends, neighbors and your networks. 

 

HOMELESS SERVICES AND HOSPITAL CAPACITY

On April 2nd, Mayor Walsh announced that construction begins at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center to add 500 beds for treating homeless adults who have tested positive for COVID-19 and need care, but do not require full hospitalization. 

  • The City has released a Request for Proposals to secure a partner organization to operate the facility. If necessary, the Convention Center beds will be opened up for hospitals to use for sub-acute COVID patients in the general population.

  • These 500 beds will bring Boston’s total number of new beds for homeless individuals to over 1,000. This includes Boston Medical Center’s Newton Pavilion facility, which the City and State are working to re-purpose as a medical facility for homeless residents affected by the coronavirus.

 

SMALL BUSINESS SUPPORT

On April 2nd, Mayor Walsh announced two new resources that will help small businesses during the public health crisis. 

  • The City of Boston has created a Small Business Relief Fund. Drawing on a combination of City, federal, and private industry contributions, it establishes $2 million in grant funding—capable of providing a lifeline to hundreds of local businesses at risk of shutting down permanently due to the crisis. It will be administered as a streamlined version of the City’s Small Business Financing program. Small businesses can begin applying on Monday, April 6. 

  • The City of Boston has also created a Financial Relief Handbook and FAQ document for small businesses. It’s a resource for navigating both public and private capital programs. It puts information and guidance about all the different programs together in one place.

 

HOUSING SUPPORT

On April 2nd, The Mayor announced a new fund to help tenants who fall behind on rent in Boston because of the public health crisis. 

  • The City of Boston has identified at least $3 million in City and federal funds that can be repurposed quickly to help tenants who can’t make their rent. This money will be targeted to households that have lost income due to the crisis, and who do not qualify for enough federal relief or unemployment benefits to make it up. The Office of Housing Stability will use its existing networks to get this help to where it’s needed, quickly and fairly. Email housingstability@boston.gov  to learn more.

  • The Mayor also expressed his support of state legislation that will put a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures throughout the state of emergency.

 

VETERANS

The City of Boston has been reaching out to veterans service providers and residential homes in Boston, to help them mitigate any risk and address concerns they have. Veterans and their family members can call 311 or email veterans@boston.gov to be connected to the City’s Office of Veterans Services.

 

The City of Boston has also created a Pen Pal Program for veterans who may be feeling social isolation. We are working to identify those veterans now, and match them with volunteers who will check in with them periodically.
 If you would like to volunteer to be a penpal, please email vetvolunteer@boston.gov.

 

STATE OF MA UPDATES

On April 2nd, Governor Charlie Baker issued an emergency order requiring 
all coastal beach reservation parking areas managed by the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) to close effective 12 PM on Friday, April 3 to reduce large concentrations of people at beaches during the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • Additionally, effective 12 PM on Friday, April 3, DCR will open select seasonal state parks early and expand access at other parks to provide additional open space opportunities for residents to enjoy and alternatives to popular state parks throughout the Commonwealth.


  • Coastal parkways that provide access to state beaches will also be closed to both parking and dropping off passengers. State beaches will remain open and available to pedestrians for transitory use only (walking, jogging, biking, solitary fishing, etc.).

  • State parks and associated parking areas remain open at this time; however, the public is asked to visit state parks and other open space properties that are located near their homes to ensure social distancing to limit the spread of COVID-19. DCR recently developed a Massachusetts State Parks COVID-19 Updates webpage.

 

On March 31st, Governor Baker announced the extension of the Stay at Home Advisory until May 4th. 

  • Non-essential business closures are extended until May 4th, in effect at noon tomorrow (April 1).


  • The 10-person limit on social gatherings is extended to May 4th.


  • All state employees performing non-core functions who are able to work remotely should continue to do so until May 4. 


  • Essential businesses will continue to operate, as well as restaurants offering takeout/delivery that abide by social distancing/state guidelines. Additional information can be found here

 

LODGING LICENSED ESTABLISHMENTS

On March 31st, Governor Baker announced new guidance from the Executive Office of Health and Human Services regarding hotels, motels, inns, bed and breakfasts, lodging houses, and short-term rentals (“Lodging Units”) and in what instances Lodging Units are deemed to be providing a COVID-19 Essential Service. See here for full details

  • Lodging Units include all hotels, motels, inns, bed and breakfasts, lodging houses rented for a period of 31 days or fewer, professionally-managed units rented for a period of 31 days or fewer, and short-term rentals (including AirBnB, VRBO, and similar rental properties) rented for a period of 31 days or fewer.

  • Lodging Units may only be offered or operated for efforts related to COVID-19 (coronavirus) and the ongoing public health crisis such as providing housing for first responders and health care workers or for Massachusetts residents who have been displaced by COVID-19. Lodging Units may not be offered or operated for any purpose other than those deemed a COVID-19 Essential Service by the State of Massachusetts. This means that Lodging Units may not be offered or operated for vacation, leisure, or other similar purposes.

 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

 

While City Hall is still open and running for critical operations, we discourage anyone from coming into City Hall or any municipal building unless they have an urgent need for services that cannot be done by phone or online. If you have questions about whether a department is open to the public, please call the City’s hotline at 3-1-1 to get connected to a department.

 

The following departments have moved to by-appointment only: 

  • Registry

  • Parking Clerk

  • Age Strong

  • Elections

  • City Clerk 

  • Assessing

  • Collecting

  • Bid counter for Public Facilities 

  • Inspectional Services Department

If constituents would like to schedule an appointment at these departments, they should reach out via phone or email. Department contacts can be found on boston.gov.

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

 

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

As of April 2nd, Boston Public Schools has distributed 23,000 Chromebooks to students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home.

 

The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, has served over 100,000 meals since schools have closed, averaging 13,000 meals per day.

Meal Distribution sites near Fenway, Kenmore, and Mission Hill include the following:

 
BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM 
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur 
— 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
BCYF Madison Park at 55 Malcolm X Blvd — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

More information about how we’re supporting Boston Public School families can be found here.

 

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Additional information can be found here

 

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

 

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

  • Stay home. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050. Buoy Health has created a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19 at buoy.com/mass.

  • Donate supplies to first responders here

  • Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here

  • Volunteer with the City of Boston here 

  • Fill out the 2020 Census. The 2020 Census is happening now and only 26.4 percent of Boston households have responded. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted. 

 

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

 

We will continue to keep you informed as we continue to receive updates. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Read Full Post »

COVID19 CASES

The City of Boston has 825 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 59 of these 825 residents have fully recovered. There have been 2 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents.

 

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

 

Massachusetts has 5,752 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 56 deaths reported at this time. 

 

The City of Boston has two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.  View them here.

 

The City of Boston has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 99411 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service is also available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese. 

  • Text BOSEspanol for Spanish

  • Text BOSKreyol for Haitian Kreyol

  • Text BOSFrancais for French

  • Text BOSKriolu for Cabo Verdean Creole

  • Text BOSPortugues for Portuguese

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide.

 

CITY OF BOSTON COVID19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

 

While City Hall is still open and running for critical operations, we discourage anyone from coming into City Hall or any municipal building unless they have an urgent need for services that cannot be done by phone or online. If you have questions about whether a department is open to the public, please call the City’s hotline at 3-1-1 to get connected to a department.

 

The following departments have moved to by appointment only: 

  • Registry

  • Parking Clerk

  • Age Strong

  • Elections

  • City Clerk 

  • Assessing

  • Collecting

  • Bid counter for Public Facilities 

  • Inspectional Services Department

If constituents would like to schedule an appointment at these departments, they should reach out via phone or email. Department contacts can be found on boston.gov

We’ve compiled a list of services for Boston residents particularly our immigrant communities affected by COVID 19 which can be found attached.

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

 

BUOY HEALTH ONLINE COVID19 SCREENINGS

The State of Massachusetts has partnered with South End based Buoy Health: a free health assistance tool to provide medical advice remotely. Buoy Health is not a replacement for emergency care. It provides a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19. Additional information can be found at buoy.com/mass.

 

HOMELESS SERVICES PLAN UPDATE

On March 30th, Mayor Walsh announced the Boston Housing Authority and the Boston Public Schools are creating a new partnership to house up to 1,000 families with BPS students at risk of displacement and experiencing homelessness over the next year. Outreach to get families into the application process will begin immediately to expand housing support for Bostonians during and after the COVID-19 public health emergency. The first housing placements are expected to begin in May 2020. Learn more.

 

On March 29th, Mayor Walsh announced that the City of Boston has secured over 240 additional beds to increase physical distancing in existing shelters and aid those in need of a home to safely quarantine or isolate themselves and reduce the further spread of COVID-19 in Boston.

  • Suffolk University will be repurposing a dormitory to provide at least 172 beds, helping reduce congestion and increase physical distancing in existing shelters in Boston. This facility will be managed in collaboration between the Pine Street Inn and the Boston Public Health Commission. This facility is not for quarantine—it’s being used to relieve pressure for regular use on our existing shelters.

  • The Davis Companies has provided another 70 beds at the site of a former long-term acute care hospital in Brighton (Commonwealth Avenue). This facility will be operated by the Boston Public Health Commission in partnership with Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program. This facility is for quarantining purposes. 

 

People in need of homeless services should not go directly to Suffolk University or the new site in Brighton. They should go to one of the existing homeless shelters, which all remain open, including: Pine Street Inn, Woods Mullen, 112 Southampton, the Boston Rescue Mission, and Rosie’s Place.

 

These 240 new beds are in addition to the 55 beds we already created for COVID-19 purposes in the South End near our shelters for isolation.

 

The City is also working closely with the State to re-purpose the Newton Pavilion site at Boston Medical Center. We will temporarily reopen it to meet the medical needs of homeless residents affected by coronavirus.  It will have a capacity of 250 beds. This facility is for medical care. 

 

To date, the City of Boston has secured close to 550 beds to make sure our residents experiencing homelessness are protected during the coronavirus public health emergency.

 

PARKS UPDATE

On March 29th, Mayor Walsh announced that the City of Boston will be taking new measures to discourage anyone from engaging in activities in our parks that put themselves and others at risk. This includes soccer, street hockey, basketball, and all group sports. To start, we’ve begun to temporarily put zip-ties on basketball hoops and we’re temporarily removing street hockey and tennis nets. The Parks Dept will also have new signage up this week. 

 

While our parks are open for solitary activities such as walks, we urge everyone to practice physical distancing of at least 6ft. The tot lots are closed and there should be no gatherings or contact sports. We are asking for your help communicating this to friends, families and neighbors. Full details about Boston Parks & Rec Dept COVID19 Operations can be found here

 

FOOD ACCESS

Food pantries are up and running, using grab-and-go packages and with special precautions. The Greater Boston Food Bank website has updated info on food pantries and other food resources, including a link to our meal sites for children and youth. Anyone facing food insecurity can also contact Project Bread at ProjectBread.org, or the Greater Boston Food Bank at GBFB.org. 

We are recommending that seniors with food access needs to call 311 to be connected to our Age Strong department.  

 

2020 CENSUS

While we are practicing physical distancing, please take some time to fill out the 2020 Census online at https://my2020census.gov/. You may respond online in 13 different languages. The Census Bureau also offers web pages and guides in 59 non-English languages, including American Sign Language, as well as guides in Braille and large print. Visit Language Support to learn more.

 

It has never been more important that every Bostonian is counted. The information collected helps determine billions of dollars in federal funds to our communities for emergency response, schools, roads, and other public services for the next 10 years. The response rate is currently at 26.4% of Boston households and it is critical we have an accurate count. 

 

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

As of March 30th, Boston Public Schools has distributed 22,161 Chromebooks to students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home.

 

The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, has served over 100,000 meals since last week, averaging 13,000 meals per day.


Meal Distribution sites near the Mission Hill, Fenway, and Kenmore include the following:

 
BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM 
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur 
— 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
BCYF Madison Park at 55 Malcolm X Blvd — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

 

More information about how we’re supporting Boston Public School families can be found here.

 

ZONING BOARD OF APPEAL / LICENSING BOARD APRIL HEARINGS

Please be advised that the following Zoning Board of Appeal April Hearings have been canceled due to the ongoing COVID19 Public Health Emergency:

  • April 7th, 2020 ZBA Hearing

  • April 16th, 2020 ZBA Subcommittee Hearing

  • April 28th, 2020 ZBA Hearing

 

To mitigate the spread of COVID19, public access to the Inspectional Services Dept offices at 1010 Massachusetts Ave is restricted to appointment only. Applicants requesting relief of the zoning or building code, or anyone inquiring about upcoming hearings, should email ISDBoardOfAppeal@boston.gov or call 617-635-4775.

 

The City of Boston’s Licensing Board has canceled hearings until further notice. Any Licensing Board questions should be directed to the Board’s Executive Secretary, Lesley Delaney Hawkins, Esq., who can be reached at (617) 635-4170 or Lesley.hawkins@boston.gov

 

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Additional information can be found here

 

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

 

HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

  • Stay home. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands

  • Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050. Buoy Health has created a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19 at buoy.com/mass.

  • Donate supplies to first responders here

  • Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here

  • Volunteer with the City of Boston here 

  • Fill out the 2020 Census. The 2020 Census is happening now and only 26.4 percent of Boston households have responded. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted. 

 

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

Read Full Post »

COVID-19 Updates Monday, March 30, 2020

Representative Jay Livingstone and Councilor Kenzie Bok published updated COVID-19 reports through their websites.
Jay Livingstone update here
Kenzie Bok’s website here

Read Full Post »

Please see below for the most recent updates to the City of Boston’s response to COVID19. We encourage everyone to keep practicing physical distancing. This does not mean social isolation. Please be sure to check in on family, friends, and older neighbors. If you know of anyone who needs help, encourage them to call 311. We will get through this together. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Table of Contents

  • COVID19 CASES
  • STATE OF MA UPDATES
  • CITY OF BOSTON COVID19 OPERATIONS
  • ZONING BOARD OF APPEAL / LICENSING BOARD APRIL HEARINGS
  • FIRST RESPONDERS TESTING SITE AT SUFFOLK DOWNS
  • NEWTON PAVILION
  • BUOY HEALTH COVID 19 SCREENINGS
  • BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS
  • BOSTON TRANSPORTATION DEPT
  • CONSTRUCTION
  • HIRING BPHC POSITIONS
  • HOW YOU CAN HELP COVID19 EFFORTS
  • STAY INFORMED

 

COVID19 CASES

The City of Boston has 477 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) in Boston residents. So far, 40 of these 477 residents have fully recovered. There have been 2 COVID-19 related deaths in Boston residents.

The Boston Public Health Commission will be providing the updated total of cases in Boston residents as it is received from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Information can be found at boston.gov/coronavirus or bphc.org.

Massachusetts has 3,240 positive cases of coronavirus (confirmed and presumptive) and 35 deaths reported at this time.

Ensuring that residents have accurate, up to date information about the coronavirus is critical during this public health crisis. The City of Boston has launched two dashboards to provide statistics on COVID19 cases in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.The first dashboard includes a day-by-day breakdown graph of the spread of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, and tracks daily updates from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health for the number of COVID-19 cases. The second dashboard includes information specific to the City of Boston, including total daily cases, recovered cases, and total cases over time. The dashboard also tracks the levels of testing done throughout the United States. View them here.

The City of Boston also has a free texting service to provide daily updates and information about the coronavirus. Text BOSCOVID to 99411 to opt-in for English. Language and communications access remains a priority for Mayor Walsh, so this text service is also available in Spanish, Haitan Creole, French, Cabo Verdean Creole, and Portuguese.
Text BOSEspanol for Spanish
Text BOSKreyol for Haitian Kreyol
Text BOSFrancais for French
Text BOSKriolu for Cabo Verdean Creole
Text BOSPortugues for Portuguese

Updates in 10 total languages can additionally be accessed through boston.gov/coronavirus#multilingual-help. Each language has its own page and hosts multilingual print materials distributed citywide.

Arabic: boston.gov/covid-19-ar
Cabo Verdean Creole: boston.gov/covid-19-cv
Simplified Chinese: boston.gov/covid-19-zh
Spanish: boston.gov/covid-19-es
Somali: boston.gov/covid-19-so
Russian: boston.gov/covid-19-ru
Vietnamese: boston.gov/covid-19-vi
French: boston.gov/covid-19-fr
Portuguese (Brazil): boston.gov/covid-19-pt
Haitian Creole: boston.gov/covid-19-hc

STATE OF MA UPDATES

On Friday, March 27th, Governor Baker issued travel recommendations instructing all travelers entering the Commonwealth to self-quarantine for 14 days. The State is also asking people outside of Massachusetts not to travel here with the exception of first responders and front line workers. Information is being distributed at Logan Airport, South Station, truck stops, gas stations and highway signs.

Governor Baker has filed legislation to extend the MA Income Tax filing deadline from April 15 to July 15.

On Tuesday, March 24th at noon, Governor Baker ordered all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers, customers and the public as of Tuesday, March 24 at noon until Tuesday, April 7 at noon. A full list of “COVID-19 Essential Services” can be found here.

On March 24th, Governor Baker directed the Department of Public Health to issue a Stay at Home advisory outlining self-isolation and social distancing protocols. This advisory goes into effect as of Tuesday, March 24 at noon until Tuesday, April 7 at noon. The Order limits gatherings to 10 people during the state of emergency, a reduction from the 25-person limit established in an earlier order.

Residents are advised to stay home and avoid unnecessary travel and other unnecessary activities during this two-week time period. Residents over 70 years of age or with underlying health conditions, who are considered at high risk when exposed to COVID-19, should limit social interactions with other people as much as possible.

CITY OF BOSTON COVID19 OPERATIONS

All essential City of Boston services such as public safety, public health and maintenance operations including street cleaning, parks maintenance, trash and recycling pick up, etc will continue to be in operation.

While City Hall is still open and running for critical operations, we discourage anyone from coming into City Hall or any municipal building unless they have an urgent need for services that cannot be done by phone or online. If you have questions about whether a department is open to the public, please call the City’s hotline at 3-1-1 to get connected to a department.

The following departments have moved to by appointment only:
Registry
Parking Clerk
Age Strong
Elections
City Clerk
Assessing
Collecting
Bid counter for Public Facilities
Inspectional Services Department

If constituents would like to schedule an appointment at these departments, they should reach out via phone or email. Department contacts can be found on boston.gov.

Residents are asked not to call 9-1-1 unless you are experiencing a medical emergency. All COVID-19 questions should be directed to the Mayor’s Health Line at 617-534-5050 or 311. The City and BPHC will continue to provide updated information on bphc.org and boston.gov/coronavirus.

ZONING BOARD OF APPEAL / LICENSING BOARD APRIL HEARINGS

Please be advised that the following Zoning Board of Appeal April Hearings have been canceled due to the ongoing COVID19 Public Health Emergency:
April 7th, 2020 ZBA Hearing
April 16th, 2020 ZBA Subcommittee Hearing
April 28th, 2020 ZBA Hearing

To mitigate the spread of COVID19, public access to the Inspectional Services Dept offices at 1010 Massachusetts Ave is restricted to appointment only. Applicants requesting relief of the zoning or building code, or anyone inquiring about upcoming hearings, should email ISDBoardOfAppeal@boston.gov or call 617-635-4775.

The City of Boston’s Licensing Board has canceled hearings until further notice. Any Licensing Board questions should be directed to the Board’s Executive Secretary, Lesley Delaney Hawkins, Esq., who can be reached at (617) 635-4170 or Lesley.hawkins@boston.gov.

FIRST RESPONDERS TESTING SITE AT SUFFOLK DOWNS

Mayor Walsh announced that the City of Boston will be opening a COVID19 testing site for Boston’s first responders at Suffolk Downs in East Boston. This testing site will serve qualified EMTs, firefighters, and police officers only. This is a joint effort between the Boston Public Health Commission and the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center. First responders will first be screened to make sure they meet the State criteria for testing. This is an important step to keep our first responders healthy. This facility will not be open to the public or media.

NEWTON PAVILION

The former Boston Medical Center hospital building known as the Newton Pavilion will be temporarily reopened and used to meet COVID-19 related medical needs of local homeless residents. Newton Pavilion is currently owned by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The facility will be operated by a consortium of providers, including Boston Medical Center, Boston Healthcare for the Homeless, shelters including the Pine Street Inn, and the City of Boston’s COVID-19 response team. The 250 hospital beds at this facility will be essential to relieving stress on our health care system and increasing medical care for our homeless population as we continue to respond to this public health crisis.

BUOY HEALTH ONLINE COVID19 SCREENINGS

The State of Massachusetts has partnered with South End based Buoy Health: a free health assistance tool to provide medical advice remotely. Buoy Health is not a replacement for emergency care. It provides a free online diagnostic tool which screens for COVID19. Additional information can be found at buoy.com/mass.

BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS:

Boston Public Schools closure has been extended to May 4th. The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, has been providing free meals to all youth and teens at various locations and times across the City. Learn more about meal distribution locations here. We have served over 100,000 meals since this program began last week, averaging 13,000 meals per day.

As part of our efforts to continue serving our students, Boston Public Schools are providing Chromebooks to students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home. Parents can fill out this application and email their school principal to receive an appointment time to pick up their student’s device to avoid creating crowds. To date we have distributed 20,724 laptops to BPS students.

Boston Public Schools is partnering with Catie’s Closet to continue to provide wrap around care for families. Last year we announced free menstrual products for students and BPS will still have them available throughout the school closure. Catie’s Closet has supplied 500 toiletry packages to each of our 16 BPS emergency meal sites.

Meal Distribution sites near the Mission Hill, Fenway, and Kenmore include the following:

BCYF Tobin at 1481 Tremont Street — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Boston Latin School at 78 Avenue Louis Pasteur — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
YMCA at 316 Huntington Ave — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM
BCYF Madison Park at 55 Malcolm X Blvd — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
BCYF Quincy Community Center at 885 Washington St — 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Blackstone Elementary School at 380 Shawmut Ave — 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Vibrant Boston Community Center at Lenox/Camden at 136 Lenox St — 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

BOSTON TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT

The following updates to parking enforcement policies are in effect until further notice in the City of Boston:

Resident Parking
Residents with a valid resident permit sticker will be allowed to park in a metered or two-hour parking space, without having to adhere to the time limit or pay a meter fee, within their specific neighborhood. For cars without the relevant resident permit parking sticker, standard time limit and meter requirements remain in place.
Street Cleaning
BTD has not been ticketing and towing for street cleaning, given challenges to finding alternative places to park in neighborhoods.
Inspection Stickers and Registration
BTD will not ticket for expired inspection stickers or registrations, given potential challenges for people to renew inspections and registrations at this time.
Parking Garages
To support the medical community, BTD has identified facilities offering free, reduced rate or reserved parking for medical professionals. To receive discounted parking, medical staff will need to present a hospital ID.To see the list of participating facilities, please visit: https://www.boston.gov/news/discounted-garages-available-hospital-staff-boston
BlueBikes
The City of Boston and its municipal partners of Brookline, Cambridge, Everett, and Somerville are offering all hospital staff a free 30-day pass for our public bike share, Bluebikes. To learn more about how to sign up for the program, visit boston.gov .
Pick Up/Drop Off Zones for Small Businesses
To help small businesses that have been impacted by COVID-19, BTD is creating temporary pick up zones in front of restaurants that have transitioned to takeout and delivery only. Takeout food pickup zones restrict parking to five minutes to increase convenience for the quick pickup and delivery of takeout food from restaurants, and provide adequate room for social distancing of six feet or more. Restaurants that would like to request a temporary pick up zone can do so on boston.gov. Requests will be evaluated on a case by case basis.

With the exception of those changes noted above, BTD will continue to enforce parking violations, with a focus on public safety violations, such as blocking a hydrant, sidewalk or handicap ramp.

CONSTRUCTION

Due to the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19, Mayor Walsh announced that he is extending the City of Boston’s order to pause non-essential construction for City of Boston permitted sites. The initial order announced on March 16th was set for 14 days and will now continue until further notice. Please see the (attached) updated temporary construction guidelines. Additional information can be found here.

HIRING BPHC POSITIONS

The City is actively hiring candidates for critical positions such as homeless counselors, recovery services, public health advocates and public safety officers. Please go to bphc.org for job listings.

HOW YOU CAN HELP COVID19 EFFORTS

Stay home if possible. If you must go outside, practice physical distancing from others (6 feet apart); avoid crowded places.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol; avoid shaking hands
Cover your coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces; and avoid close contact with people who are sick.
If you think you might be sick, please call your doctor or 311 to be connected to the Mayor’s Health Line 617-534-5050.
Donate supplies to first responders here
Donate to the City of Boston Resiliency Fund here
Fill out the 2020 Census. The 2020 Census is happening now and only 16.7 percent of households have responded. The Census informs how billions of dollars in federal funds will be allocated by state, local and federal lawmakers annually for the next 10 years. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that all Bostonians are counted.

STAY INFORMED

Receive the latest COVID19 info from reliable sources. Visit: bphc.org/coronavirus; boston.gov/coronavirus; mass.gov/2019coronavirus. Call: 311 or 211

We will continue to keep you informed as we continue to receive updates. Stay healthy and stay safe.

Read Full Post »

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