COVID-19 Update for 4/28/20 and Free COVID-19 Testing in Somerville
Below is a message from the Somerville, MA Community Alert System. Sign up to receive these updates by email, text, or phone.
Dear Community Members,
Here is a COVID-19 update for Tuesday, April 28.
Please also be sure to check somervillema.gov/coronavirus for information and resources that are updated frequently.
- Case Counts: As of 9:30 a.m. today, April 28, a total of 545 Somerville residents have tested positive for COVID-19, 205 of them have since recovered, and sadly there have been six deaths.
- Somerville Cares Fund applications are now open. More details below.
- Somerville Small Business Fund Accepting applications for support through May 11: More info at somervillema.gov/CovidBizHelp.
- New, free citywide COVID-19 testing available: Thanks to advocacy by Mayor Curtatone, our partners at Cambridge Health Alliance, and support from the State, COVID-19 tests are currently available to all Somerville residents by appointment. You do not need to be symptomatic or have health insurance to get a free test. To schedule a test, call 617-665-2928, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. The testing program will begin with drive-through testing outside Somerville Hospital, and will soon expand to walking and bicycling clients. A second testing site is also planned for East Somerville. The State provided 3,500 testing kits for this new testing program, and Mayor Curtatone and the Board of Health are advocating for more. More information HERE.
- Testing is part of Somerville’s new COVID-19 Testing/Tracing/Safe Isolation Plan: All Somerville residents who test positive for COVID-19 will receive ongoing support from Somerville Public Health nurses to isolate safely, trace contacts, and access needed resources. Persons with COVID-19 who cannot safely isolate at home will be eligible for referral to an isolation hotel under the medical supervision of Mass. General Hospital.
- Statewide stay-at-home advisory extended to May 18: Today Gov. Charlie Baker announced that the statewide stay-at-home advisory, as well as the closure of non-essential businesses, is being extended to May 18.
- Deadline extended for two free months of Comcast’s Internet Essentials plan: Income-eligible households can receive two free months of Comcast’s Internet Essentials plan if they sign up by June 30. Currently, the Internet Essentials plan costs $9.95 per month after the initial free months. To sign up visit internetessentials.com or call 1-855-846-8376.
- CDC adds six new symptoms to common COVID-19 symptoms list:The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now advises that you may have COVID-19, and should contact a medical provider, if you have the following symptoms: “Cough, shortness of breath, or difficulty breathing Or at least two of these symptoms: fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell.”
Today’s Assistance Tip: Somerville Cares Fund Applications Available Now
Applications for support are now being accepted for the donation-funded Somerville Cares Fund jointly launched by Mayor Joe Curtatone, the United Way, and the Community Action Agency of Somerville (CAAS). The Somerville Cares Fund will provide emergency financial assistance to individuals and families during the COVID-19 public health crisis to meet needs such as food, housing, medicine, funeral costs, and other essential expenses.
The fund is hosted by the United Way and administered by CAAS. In most cases, accepted applicants may receive up to $250 per person and up to $1,000 per family. There is no requirement to share immigration status (undocumented residents are eligible).
Funding is available for:
- Somerville residents
- Persons who work in Somerville (including those recently laid off due to the pandemic)
- Families with children enrolled in Somerville Public Schools
Applications will be prioritized and funded on the basis of need; not on a first-come, first-served basis.
Today’s Public Health Tip: Face Covering Safety
Starting tomorrow (April 29), anyone over the age of two must wear a clean face mask or face covering when in any indoor or outdoor space that is open to the public. Here are some tips to make sure you’re wearing your face covering safely and protecting those around you as much as possible:
- Wearing a face covering is not a substitute for social distancing. Whenever possible, stay at least six feet from anyone not in your household.
- Face coverings and masks should cover both your mouth and face and fit snugly on the sides.
- Wash your hands with soap and water before putting on or taking off a face covering.
- Don’t touch your face when wearing a face covering and avoid your eyes, nose, and mouth when putting it on or taking it off.
- Keep your mask or face covering clean. The more you wear it, the more you should wash it.
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.