Town’s Cautious Approach has Netted Positive Results
Board of Health Supports School District Proceeding with Hybrid Learning Model
DEDHAM — Town Manager Leon Goodwin and Dedham Board of Health Chairwoman Leanne Jasset are pleased to share that the town of Dedham is now designated “Yellow,” indicating its rate of positive COVID-19 tests has fallen. However, the leaders urge extreme caution and continued vigilance to continue to stop the spread of coronavirus.
The Town of Dedham was designated a “Red” high risk community on Sept. 10, but continued vigilance, aggressive testing, prevention efforts and social distancing have helped the community reduce its positive test rate.
There are currently 22 active COVID-19 cases in Dedham.
“We are pleased to see that our levels have dropped as a result of our aggressive response to the ‘red’ designation earlier this month,” Town Manager Goodwin said. “While this news is a step forward, we want to stress that this should not cause us to drop our guard one bit. We will continue to host testing for our residents and we encourage everyone to get tested and do their part to stop the spread.”
The testing schedule for the rest of the week is as follows:
- Thursday, Sept. 24 from 2-6 p.m.
- Friday, Sept. 25 from noon to 4 p.m.
The testing is conducted by Fallon Ambulance at the Endicott Estate, located at 656 East St.
Testing is open to and free for all. You do not need to have symptoms to be tested. The testing is drive-through only and no walk-ups will be allowed. No appointment is necessary.
Dedham officials partnered with state leaders last week to bring the mobile testing unit to town in response to the designation by the state as a COVID-19 “high risk” community.
According to data released by the state, as of Wednesday, Sept. 23, Dedham has had 508 confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic. In the last 14 days, 3,622 tests have been administered.
“We are extremely pleased to announce that the town is moving in the right direction to stop further spread of COVID-19,” Chairwoman Jasset said. “The testing capabilities provided by the state have assisted us greatly in our response. As we move forward I would like to stress the importance of everyone working collaboratively to strengthen our efforts. We will overcome this virus by working together.”
In response to this drop in designation status, the Board of Health supports the phased in approach to hybrid learning for the Dedham Public School District.
In one week of testing, Dedham has supported 2,243 tests and only received 6 positive cases out of this amount. This is a significant increase in testing from the reported number of tests on Sept. 16 that recorded 1,591 tests conducted.
Dedham continues to share the following tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to protect yourself and others from contracting COVID-19:
- Wash your hands frequently for a minimum of 20 seconds with soap and water. Hand washing is especially important after visiting a public place, before eating or preparing food, before touching your face, after using the restroom, handling your cloth face covering, after changing a diaper, after caring for someone sick, after touching animals or pets and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
- When soap and water are not available, hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol can be used.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- When someone in your household is sick, try to avoid close contact and maintain six feet of distance from that person.
- Maintain six feet of distance from people who don’t live in your household when in public. Keep in mind that those without symptoms, including yourself, may still be spreading the virus. It is especially important to maintain distance from people at a higher risk of getting sick.
- Wearing a mask will protect other people in the event you have COVID-19. Everyone is advised to wear a cloth face covering in public and around those who don’t live in your household, especially when social distancing is difficult.
- Use a tissue to cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze, or use your elbow.
- Used tissues should be thrown in the trash. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer after throwing away a tissue.
- Frequently touched surfaces should be cleaned and disinfected daily, including tables, doorknobs, light switches, counter tops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets and sinks. If a surface is visibly dirty, be sure to clean it using detergent or soap and water prior to disinfecting.
- Everyone should continue to monitor their health daily, which includes watching for symptoms including cough, shortness of breath, and fever. For additional symptoms that may be indicative of a COVID-19 infection, click here.
- If you feel ill or are exhibiting symptoms, stay home.
- If symptoms develop, take your temperature. Wait to do so until 30 minutes after exercising or taking medications that could lower your temperature.
- Click here for additional guidance from the CDC, should symptoms develop.
For additional guidance from the CDC pertaining to day-to-day life including going to work, running errands, travel, attending funerals, caring for children, and stress and coping, click here.
Residents are urged to regularly check the town’s COVID-19 information website for regular updates about the status of the virus in the community. Visitors can subscribe via email to receive notifications for new posts.
Dedham residents with questions may additionally contact the Dedham Health Department at 781-751-9220.