Hopkinton COVID-19 update for Feb. 27: Some restrictions to be loosened Monday as reopening plan moves to next step

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Editor’s note: This is the town of Hopkinton’s COVID-19 update for Feb. 27.

COVID-19 Updates and Precautions
Feb. 27 update

Previous updates and additional information and resources can be found here:
coronavirus-hopkintonma.hub.arcgis.com/

As of Feb. 26, Hopkinton’s Health Department is reporting 739 total ​confirmed COVID-19 cases; 24 of those cases are active, with 698 recoveries and 17 deaths. You can see historical tracking and updates on ​Hopkinton’s Community Impact Dashboard, which is updated frequently.

Reopening Massachusetts — NEW UPDATE
On Thursday (Feb. 25), the Baker-Polito Administration announced that Massachusetts would advance to Step 2 of Phase 3 of the state’s reopening plan as of Monday, March 1, and also announced its plan to transition to Step 1 of Phase 4 on Monday, March 22.

Since the beginning of this year, key public health data, such as new cases and hospitalizations, have been closely monitored and a significant decline has been documented, allowing for a return to Step 2 of Phase 3, effective March 1 for all cities and towns. This includes the following updates to businesses, activities and capacities:

• Indoor performance venues such as concert halls, theaters, and other indoor performance spaces will be allowed to reopen at 50% capacity with no more than 500 persons.

• Indoor recreational activities with greater potential for contact (laser tag, roller skating, trampolines, obstacle courses) will be allowed to reopen at 50% capacity.

• Capacity limits across all sectors with capacity limits will be raised to 50% and exclude employees.

• Restaurants will no longer have a percent capacity limit and will be permitted to host musical performances; 6-foot social distancing, limits of six people per table, and 90-minute limits remain in place.

Residents must continue to wear masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and are encouraged to avoid contact outside of their immediate households. The Travel Advisory and other public health orders remain in effect.

For more information on the Commonwealth’s reopening plan:
mass.gov/info-details/reopening-massachusetts

Hopkinton Public Schools
The Hopkinton Public Schools have established a Reopening Planning Team, whose work, focused on fully reopening the schools for hybrid learners, will be reported to the School Committee in early March.

Future Vaccine Distribution
On Feb. 18, local boards of health were informed of the commonwealth’s streamlined vaccination distribution plan that prioritizes equity and high-capacity throughput vaccination, particularly as vaccine supply from the federal government remains extremely constrained.

This streamlined distribution plan will increase vaccine access at high throughput vaccination locations such as mass vaccination sites or regional sites and at pharmacy sites. In addition to increasing efficiency in administering the vaccine, the commonwealth will ensure that the program is equitable and meets the needs of communities that have been the most disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.

For these reasons, Hopkinton is encouraging residents to utilize the vaxfinder.mass.gov portal to find vaccination sites and make appointments. We currently have no indication Hopkinton will receive another (new) batch of vaccines for a local clinic.
**If you were vaccinated recently at the Hopkinton Senior Center, and already have an appointment for your second vaccination, that second appointment is valid!

A reminder that vaccine supply remains very limited. Massachusetts is currently vaccinating:
People in Phase 1
People with two-plus certain medical conditions
Low income and affordable senior housing residents and staff
● People age 65-plus

You can use this site to confirm your eligibility: mass.gov/covid-19-vaccine

Library Walk-In Hours Expanded
As COVID-19 case rates decline, the library is pleased to announce an expansion of our walk-in hours. As of Monday, Feb. 22, the library building is open to the public at the following times:

● Monday: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
● Tuesday 1-7 p.m.
● Wednesday 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
● Thursday 1-7 p.m.
● Friday 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

The library building will be open for quick browsing and checkouts only; computers, study rooms, meeting rooms, seating and public bathrooms will remain unavailable for the time being.

Curbside pickup hours are: 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday/Wednesday/Friday, and 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday/Thursday.

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Hopkinton Town Hall reopened to the public as of Aug. 10. Appointments are required ​due to the state’s COVID-19 limits on building occupancy​: ​Click here for more information​. All town departments are open for business and many transactions can be completed online. We are available via phone and email to assist during regular business hours. A full Town Directory can be ​found here​. A box at the front door of Town Hall may be used to drop off correspondence, applications, etc., and they may also be mailed or emailed.

Please remember to practice social distancing, wear a face covering, wash your hands often, and be safe.

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Hopkinton also posts frequently on social media. Our Twitter is the best place to keep up with all happenings Hopkinton. You don’t need an account to see our twitter feed: https://twitter.com/HopkintonMA

Complete list of Emergency Orders and Guidance from Mass.gov
https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-state-of-emergency

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