COVID-19: February 17, 2021 Update from Representative Dykema

February 17th COVID-19 Update

Phase Two, Step 2 begins February 18th.

Today, the Baker-Polito Administration announced individuals ages 65 and over and those with 2+ certain medical conditions, including asthma, can start booking appointments for vaccine beginning Thursday, February 18th

With this announcement, almost 1 million individuals are newly eligible for vaccine. Due to extremely high demand for appointments and limited vaccine supply, it could take more than a month for all eligible individuals to secure an available appointment, unless federal supply significantly increases. Recently, Massachusetts has been receiving approximately 110,000 first doses per week from the federal government. Residents are encouraged to keep checking the website as appointments are added on a rolling basis.  

Residents of public senior and affordable housing can learn more about their options here. To learn more about which medical conditions may make you eligible to receive the vaccine, visit this page. If you are eligible and would like to book an appointment, visit vaxfinder.mass.gov or mass.gov/covidvaccine. If you have trouble with the online sign-up or require any additional assistance, you can now call the 2-1-1 help line 7 days a week.

News Updates

Below is a summary of the most recent efforts to respond to the wide range of needs in our communities. For a summary of previously issued guidance and state restrictions related to the coronavirus epidemic, visit mass.gov/covid19. For previous updates visit carolyndykema.com/covid19.

Coronavirus Testing and Response

  • Today, the state saw 1,322 new positive cases of COVID-19 in the Commonwealth, with 533,024 total cases and 55 reported deaths as of today at 5pm.
  • The average new cases over the last 7 days is 1,711, and the average number of deaths is 58.
  • The 7-day weighted average positive test rate in Massachusetts is 2.2%.
  • 82,971 new molecular tests for COVID-19 were reported in the Commonwealth today.
  • The Department of Public Health regularly releases a daily reporting dashboard containing detailed information on hospitalizations, demographic data, and county-by-county breakdowns of cases. To view the DPH dashboard, visit here.

Heath Care (as of 2/17)

  • Hospitalization: 1,088 individuals are currently hospitalized with COVID-19 statewide, no change from yesterday. The 7-day average of hospitalizations is 1,157.
  • Hospital Capacity: 17% of the Commonwealth’s non-ICU hospital beds are available for new patients if needed (24% of statewide ICU beds are available). In the MetroWest region, 18% of the region’s non-ICU beds are available for new patients (28% of regional ICU beds are available).
  • Long-term care: There are 424 long-term care facilities with at least one case of COVID-19 and 34,504 staff and residents in facilities who have tested positive for COVID-19. 8,420 COVID-19 deaths have been reported in long-term care facilities.
  • For information on COVID-19 testing and guidance on whether you should get tested, how to get tested, and where to get tested, visit the COVID-19 testing portal at mass.gov/gettested.

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