April 18, 2020 – COVID-19 Update, Case Counts, Homelessness Resources, and More
Dear Community Members,
Here is a COVID-19 update for Saturday, April 18.
Please also be sure to check somervillema.gov/coronavirus for information and resources that are updated frequently.
- Case Counts: As of 2 p.m. today, April 18, a total of 355 Somerville residents have tested positive for COVID-19, 125 of them have since recovered, and sadly there have now been six deaths.
- Pleasant Apartments quarantined: Residents of the Mt. Pleasant senior apartment building in Somerville have been placed under a mandatory minimum 14-day quarantine after eight cases of COVID-19 were confirmed there. The Board of Health has been working with the building management to help make sure residents have the supplies they need for quarantine, and the Council on Aging is offering support services to residents to answer their questions, connect them to resources, and assist with coordinating access to basic needs. Building residents who need assistance should contact the Council on Aging directly at 617-625-6600 x2300 or via 311 at 617-666-3311.
- Somerville Small Business COVID-19 Relief Fund: The City launched a $1 million fund that will give forgivable loans of up to $10,000 to local, independently owned small businesses affected by COVID-19. Application procedures and full details for the Small Business COVID-19 Relief Fund will be announced next week. More info in the news section at gov. Business owners should also visit somervillema.gov/covidbizhelp for more information on other available resources and supports.
- Somerville restaurants can now offer groceries: Today Mayor Joe Curtatone and the Board of Health ordered that restaurants can offer grocery items for pick-up and/or delivery service through the duration of the local state of emergency. Next week you’ll be able to find restaurants offering groceries on com.
- State opens recovery sites for persons experiencing homelessness: The administration has opened five state-operated isolation and recovery sites across the state to provide regional solutions for people experiencing homelessness that need a safe place to isolate and recover after testing positive for COVID-19.
Today’s Assistance Tip: Local Things To Do While Social Distancing
Not being able to go out and socialize can be difficult, but there are a number of ways you can stay busy and entertained while social distancing:
- The Somerville Public Library has an extensive collection of online resources that includes ebooks, movies, music, and databases.
- Try a new recipe courtesy of our Nibble culinary entrepreneurs.
- Put on your face covering and take a walking or biking tour of public art around Somerville.
- Find more ideas at the Activity Ideas for Social Distancing tab on this website.
Today’s Public Health Tip: A Request for Runners and Joggers
We’ve been following new developments on COVID-19 and know that there isn’t consensus in the scientific community about whether or not runners and joggers pose a higher risk for transmitting the disease (we’ve seen the studies, but we’ve also seen experts poking holes in those studies). In the absence of a definitive answer, some people are understandably worried when they encounter runners and joggers. So we’re asking our runners and joggers to take a few extra precautions that, at a minimum, will at least help give their neighbors peace of mind.
- Social distancing applies even when you are passing. Please remain at least 6 feet away from others at all times.
- Better still, give others a little extra room. That may mean having to change your pace or route.
- If it doesn’t restrict your breathing, wear a face mask or cover. You should also carry one to put on if you find yourself in an area where it’s hard to maintain a safe distance from others.
- Don’t spit, and please bring along tissues to blow your nose.
- Avoid popular routes that could become crowded. Run or jog on quieter side streets or, if you have a car, look for options outside of the city.
- Remember that these are trying times for us all and that we all need to make sacrifices and changes to our routines to help protect ourselves and others.
For more information and regular COVID-19 updates, visit www.somervillema.gov/coronavirus and sign up for City alerts at www.somervillema.gov/Alerts. We urge you to sign up for every alert method you are able to receive: phone call, text, email. Also, follow FB.com/SomervilleCity and @SomervilleCity.