WINTHROP — Town Manager Austin Faison, Public Health Director Meredith Hurley and Police Chief/Emergency Management Director Terence Delehanty wish to provide updates to the community on the latest information and efforts regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of Thursday, Winthrop has 130 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Six residents have died, 51 residents have recovered from the disease and a 73 additional residents are in isolation with suspected cases.
A total of 11 cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed at Winthrop Pace EBNH, a long-term care facility in town. Two additional cases are confirmed in a congregate care facility in Winthrop. All of the people with COVID-19 in long-term care and congregate care are currently in isolation. No deaths have been reported in these facilities. Winthrop town officials have been in constant communication with administrators at these facilities to discuss plans for isolation and containment of the disease.
Public Health Director Hurley believes that many of the additional cases confirmed in Winthrop this month are due to people previously testing positive infecting members of their immediate family/household.
A television news out erroneously reported yesterday that Winthrop’s infection rate was the second highest in Massachusetts with 12,877.64 per 100,000. This incorrect, and a correction has been requested. Winthrop’s infection rate is approximately 742.98 per 100,000, placing it below the middle mark in the Commonwealth.
Face Coverings Required in Public
The Winthrop Town Council and Board of Health recently passed an emergency order requiring that residents wear a face mask or similar covering when entering any store, public common areas, public buildings or other establishments in town.
Violation of or failure to comply with this Order is punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 111, Section 122.
Social Distancing Continues
The Town of Winthrop encourages residents to continue to practice social distancing — remaining at least six feet away from others, and Gov. Baker has temporarily banned gatherings of more than 10 people.
Social distancing has been shown to significantly help to minimize exposure, especially given that COVID-19 is highly contagious and people may be contagious prior to exhibiting symptoms.
As always, if anyone displays symptoms of COVID-19, including a fever, cough or shortness of breath, they should not come to work or school and they are advised to contact their primary care physician.
On Friday, April 3, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that all individuals going out in public wear cloth face masks as precaution in situations where social distancing is hard to maintain, such as grocery stores and pharmacies, in order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing is the practice of keeping at least six feet between people while in public.
Information about how to properly remove and make your own face mask can be found on the CDC’s website here.
COVID-19, the illness caused by the novel coronavirus, has been declared a Global Pandemic by the World Health Organization and has moved Governor Baker to declare a State of Emergency and President Donald Trump to declare a National Emergency. Governor Baker on Thursday also made a formal request to the federal government for a Major Disaster Declaration.
The Town encourages everyone to stay informed regarding COVID-19. The following resources are recommended for the most updated information:
- Town of Winthrop Official COVID-19 updates – https://www.town.winthrop.ma.us/home/urgent-alerts/covid-19-public-health-updates
- Winthrop Public Safety website – https://winthroppublicsafety.com/
- Winthrop COVID-19 Tip Hotline – https://winthroppublicsafety.com/covid-19-tip-hotline/
- Massachusetts Department of Public Health – https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-updates-and-information
- Massachusetts 2-1-1 general COVID-19 information – https://mass211.org/ or dial 2-1-1 (24/7)
- Massachusetts COVID-19 text updates: Text “COVIDMA” to 888-777
- United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – https://www.cdc.gov/
- The Children’s Advocacy Center of Suffolk County – https://www.suffolkcac.org/support-resources/covid-19-support