The Cambridge Public Health Department advises residents that there is evidence of increased COVID-19 activity both locally and nationally. Wastewater indicators are slightly elevated nationwide and in Eastern Massachusetts. Similarly, hospitalizations have risen nationally and within the Commonwealth. Here in Cambridge, there have been some COVID-19 clusters at nursing homes as well as an increase in reported COVID-19 cases.
Given this increase in COVID activity, the health department reminds residents of the importance of prevention and treatment. The resources currently available offer strong protection against serious illness.
The best protection against serious illness from COVID-19 is staying up-to-date on vaccinations. The health department is finalizing our fall vaccine clinic schedule and will be offering residents the recommended booster dose in addition to annual flu vaccines at many locations throughout the city. We’ll be sharing more information after the CDC issues its recommendations for this year’s COVID booster.
CPHD recommends that residents monitor for symptoms and test if they feel unwell. When community COVID-19 levels are rising, it’s important to pay close attention to possible symptoms. We also suggest that people consider testing before visiting indoors with individuals who are vulnerable.
Free COVID rapid tests are available at the health department (119 Windsor Street), City Hall, and libraries.
As COVID-19 numbers rise, residents can choose to exercise caution by wearing a mask in crowded indoor spaces; this type of precaution is particularly important for those at risk for serious illness.
We remind individuals who do test positive to speak to their healthcare provider right away about treatment options. Medications, including Paxlovid, have proven to be extremely effective at preventing serious illness and deaths, and there is some evidence that early treatment can help reduce the risk of long COVID.
CPHD will be watching indicators carefully and advising the public about any further increases of COVID activity. The COVID response team remains available to field questions and concerns about testing positive, getting vaccinated, and other issues. Residents can call the COVID-19 hotline at 617-933-0797.