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Hopkinton COVID-19 update for Oct. 29: 26 active cases; trick-or-treat guidance

by | Oct 29, 2021 | News

Editor’s note: This is the town of Hopkinton’s COVID-19 update for Oct. 29.

COVID-19 Updates and Precautions
Oct. 29 update

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

As of Oct. 28, Hopkinton’s Health Department is reporting 1,311 total ​confirmed COVID-19 cases; 26 of those cases are active, with 1,268 recoveries and 17 deaths. You can see historical tracking and updates on ​Hopkinton’s Community Impact Dashboard. The Commonwealth’s COVID-19 Interactive Dashboard is another valuable resource to review rates and trends:
mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-response-reporting#covid-19-interactive-data-dashboard-

Halloween — NEW INFO
The Hopkinton Health Department has consulted with the MDPH and local officials with the CDC. The consensus is that it is safe to trick-or-treat this year as long as all participants practice the following: trick-or-treat outside, participate in small familiar groups, and avoid crowded Halloween parties.

Hopkinton Public Schools — NEW INFO
On Thursday evening, Oct. 21, the Hopkinton School Committee voted 3-2 to lift the mask mandate for a three-week trial period for vaccinated students and staff at Hopkinton High School. Hopkinton High School, with a vaccination rate greater than 95 percent, received the “off-ramping” waiver from the Department Of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) on Oct. 7.

The three-week lifting of the mask mandate begins on Monday, Nov. 1, and ends on Friday, Nov. 19. Students will resume wearing masks on Monday, Nov. 22, prior to the Thanksgiving holiday. This three-week period will allow the HPS to assess the success of permitting vaccinated staff and students to choose whether to mask or not.

The committee also voted to be able either to hold an emergency meeting or to allow the superintendent to restore mask-wearing at any time during the three-week trial period, in the event of a spike in cases.

SMOC Fuel Assistance — NEW INFO
Applications are currently being accepted for the home heating fuel assistance program through SMOC (South Middlesex Opportunity Council). The program runs from November to April and is available to all households in Hopkinton if the total household income falls within their guidelines. A household of one qualifies for assistance with an income up to $39,105; a household of two qualifies with an income up to $51,137; etc. Heating with natural gas, oil, propane, electricity, wood, coal or pellets, or individuals whose heat is included in their rent are all potentially eligible for assistance.

Application assistance is offered free of charge and the Senior Center is the only SMOC intake site for Hopkinton residents. The Outreach Department will assist any Hopkinton resident or household with their application; you don’t have to be a senior citizen.

If you have additional questions about fuel assistance, eligibility guidelines, or would like to apply for assistance, please don’t hesitate to call the Center at 508-497-9730 and ask for Kim or Julia. Due to health and safety concerns, we are unable to provide assistance to walk-ins; you must call ahead to schedule an appointment.

Booster Shot Info — REMINDER
COVID-19 vaccine booster shots are available for the following Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine recipients who completed their initial series at least six months ago:
● 65 years and older
● 18+ who have underlying medical conditions
● 18+ who work in high-risk settings
● 18+ who live in high-risk settings

More info on the COVID-19 vaccine booster shots from the CDC can be found here:
cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/booster-shot.html

COVID-19 vaccine booster shots FAQ’s from Mass.gov:
mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-booster-frequently-asked-questions

Delta variant info:
cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/variants/variant-info.html — last updated Oct. 4

Vaccine Info — Where & How
mass.gov/covid-19-vaccine
Find a location using vaxfinder.mass.gov/
**In-home vaccinations are available to anyone who cannot travel to a vaccination location. Call 833-983-0485 to schedule an appointment for yourself or your loved ones.

Testing — Where & How
mass.gov/covid-19-testing
mass.gov/info-details/find-a-covid-19-test

Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People
cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated-guidance.html

Hopkinton Youth and Family Services (HYFS)
The mission of Hopkinton Youth and Family Services is to provide access to comprehensive social services for youth and families & to enhance behavioral health for the entire Hopkinton community. HYFS has a number of resources available, and is here to assist residents in this uncertain time (and always!). Click here to learn more about their services: hopkintonma.gov/residents/youth_and_family_services.php

COVID Prevention & Treatment
Many of the things you do to help prevent colds and the flu can help protect you against other respiratory viruses, including COVID-19:
● Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.
● Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
● Clean things that are frequently touched (like doorknobs and countertops) with household cleaning spray or wipes.
● Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use a tissue or your inner elbow, not your hands.
● Stay home if you are sick and avoid close contact with others.
● Utilize a face covering when warranted.
● Get vaccinated.
Even if you do not have symptoms, stay home as much as you can and practice social distancing if you must go out. That’s because you can be sick with COVID-19 and spread the illness to others as much as 48 hours before you have symptoms.

If you must travel, automobile travel is the safest alternative (single family in car). Utilize the other precautions listed above when in a high risk environment.

When enrolling your child in a program or sport, verify that the organization has developed and implemented COVID-19 protocols.

See more info from Mass.gov here: mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-prevention-and-treatment

State of Emergency Lifted as of June 15, 2021
On May 28, Governor Baker announced the State of Emergency would be lifted as of June 15. More info here:
mass.gov/news/governor-baker-issues-order-rescinding-covid-19-restrictions-on-may-29-and-terminating-state-of-emergency-effective-june-15

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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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