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

Thursday December 17, 2020
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Advisory Information

During the past fourteen days, a total of 174 new probable and confirmed cases were reported in the Town of Barnstable, which calculates to an average of 12.4 cases per day (or 27.9 per 100,000 population).  Since March, a total of 1,278 residents of the Town have tested positive for COVID-19 cumulatively to date.  The epidemiological graph below provides the number of positive cases reported per day in the Town of Barnstable during the time period from March 19, 2020 through December 16, 2020.  The green line depicted on this graph is an attempt to show the reader where we have been and where are presently in regards to the “curves,” providing the average number of cases reported per day along a time-line.

COVID case graph

Since Sunday December 13th, all cities and towns in Massachusetts reverted back to Step 1 of Phase III of the opening plan.  Information regarding businesses and venues affected by this regression is available at:  https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-updates-and-information

Hospitalizations of patients infected with this virus have increased in Barnstable County.  As of yesterday, Cape Cod Healthcare reported thirty-nine (39) positive patients who were/are being treated in their two hospitals (Falmouth Hospital and Cape Cod Hospital).  Seven patients were in the intensive care units as of yesterday.  

In Barnstable County, there have been a total of  4,178 positive cases (cumulatively) and 211 deaths from Coronavirus this year.  The Massachusetts Department of Public Health reported there have been a total of 292,316 positive cases and 11,261 deaths from COVID-19 in the State of Massachusetts this year.  In the United States, 16,981,302 persons contracted the virus and a total of 307,512 persons in the United States died from the virus this year according to data received from the John Hopkins University website.

A total of 9,809,105 persons were tested in Massachusetts for the virus.  2.98% of those tested were found to be positive state-wide.  

On December 14, 2002, Hyannis Fire Chief Peter Burke and the Cape Cod Reopening Task Force announced two new test sites on Cape Cod, at the Cape Cod Melody Tent in Hyannis and at the Barnstable Fairgrounds in Falmouth.   To receive a test, individuals must book an appointment in advance by calling the Community Testing Line at 508-862-5595. Tests for asymptomatic individuals are available for $75, and are offered for free to individuals who confirm their inability to pay when they call to book an appointment.  For additional information, please click on this link:  https://www.capecodhealth.org/medical-services/infectious-disease/coronavirus/covid-19-testing-process/

Key officials of the Town continue to meet daily to plan and implement proper actions which are in step with the Governor’s orders and MA DPH guidelines.  Health Division staff continue to meet and coordinate daily to ensure we are providing the most up-to-date information to citizens and business owners relative to latest Massachusetts requirements and recommendations.  Health inspectors continue to review applications and issue disposal works construction permits, review building permit applications, witness percolation tests, respond to complaints regarding hazardous wastes, retail stores, food establishments, semi-public swimming pools, hotels, recreational camps, tanning facilities, mobile food units, rental units, and horse stables.   Each complaint is investigated and appropriate action is taken within 24 hours.

During these times of increasing numbers of positive case counts and patient hospitalizations, we strongly urge everyone to follow the State guidelines and to take these basic precautions which include:

  • Wear a face covering while out in public where social distancing is not possible per the Governor’s order; 
  • 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, school, sports and other activities when ill. 
  • Stay home to isolate or quarantine when contacted and required by the Board of Health.

Our Public Health Nurse and team of contract nurses continue to contact those who become infected to ensure they are appropriately isolated and to contact individuals who have come into contact with them to take the required quarantine precautions.  

If you should have any questions, call us at the Town of Barnstable Health Division Office at 508 862 4644.

Respectfully Submitted, 

Thomas A. McKean, RS, CHO
Director of Public Health