Board of Health (508) 862-4644 health@town.barnstable.ma.us

Wed. March 25, 2020
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Advisory Information

A total of eight (8) Town of Barnstable residents tested positive for COVID-19.   The Massachusetts Department of Public Health reported that as of 4:00 p.m. yesterday, there were forty (40) residents of Barnstable County who tested positive.  A total of 1,159 Massachusetts residents tested positive state-wide (compared to 777 the day before).

13,749 persons have been tested in Massachusetts for COVID-19 and less than 9% of them were found to be positive.  Cape Cod Healthcare has issued updated guidance regarding testing at this link: https://www.capecodhealth.org/medical-services/infectious-disease/coronavirus/covid-19-testing-process/

The Health Division continues to work with the people who were infected to ensure they are appropriately quarantined, and with those who have come into contact with them to take the required precautions.

Residents are reminded to take steps toward social distancing, limit exposure to others, and wash hands frequently.

The Health Division continues to actively provide disease prevention guidance.  We continue to suggest basic precautions to all which include:

  • Frequent hand-washing, for 20 seconds with soap.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Cough hygiene – into a tissue when possible (throw it away immediately) or into your arm.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with those who are ill.
  • Stay home yourself from work or school when ill.

Residents are reminded to thoroughly wash their reusable grocery bags before bringing them into supermarkets.  The best way to clean your reusable grocery bags is to toss them in the washing machine and launder in hot water with detergent.  Then, run them through the dryer.  You should wash anything made from recycled plastic (a.k.a. polypropylene bags) by hand in warm soapy water and air dry. Shopping bags should be washed after every use when carrying food, this is especially critical for bags used for meats, produce, and precooked foods. 

The Town of Barnstable Public Health Division will continue to monitor the progress of the COVID-19 cases in Massachusetts, Barnstable County, and within our Town.  We will continue to review and post the most up-to-date information from dependable sources to keep you informed.  Our Town has an emergency response plan for public health emergencies should we need to implement it in the future.  We recommend visiting the following websites with reliable information: Center for Disease Control and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.  For the latest on case counts, visit the Centers for Diseases Control website: CDC website.  Reported cases globally in real-time are also listed on the John Hopkins University site.

A Massachusetts hotline 2-1-1 is operating 24/7 to provide updated information and answer questions regarding the Coronavirus.  Town officials have been working through the week-end and will continue to work through the week to keep residents and town staff safe.  In addition, we continue to meet and coordinate regularly with local and regional partners to ensure that the Town is taking any and all appropriate measures to respond to the virus.

If you should have any questions, you may call the Massachusetts hotline 2-1-1 or the Town of Barnstable Health Division at 508 862 4644.

Sincerely,

Thomas A. McKean, RS, CHO

Director of Public Health