IPSWICH — Town Manager Anthony Marino and Director of Public Health Colleen Fermon report that Town Hall and the Council on Aging will temporarily close to the public and begin providing in-person services by appointment only next week due to a rise in cases of COVID-19 in the community.
The Town of Ipswich has been designated as a “red” or high risk community for COVID-19 by the state, and as of today there are 89 active cases of COVID-19 in town. There have been a total of 491 cases in Ipswich since the start of the pandemic.
Out of an abundance of caution and in an effort to protect the health of staff and the community, the Town Hall facility including the Council on Aging will be closed to the public beginning on Wednesday, Jan. 20. The public will be allowed into Town Hall on an appointment only basis.
Staff from Town Hall and the COA will be available to assist the community remotely.
“We don’t make this decision lightly, but we’re committed first and foremost to protecting the health of staff as well as residents and business owners here in Ipswich. We feel this is the best decision for the entire Ipswich community,” Town Manager Marino said. “I deeply appreciate the continued cooperation of our residents and town employees during the challenges we continue to face as a result of this pandemic. As soon as we have an update regarding this situation we will notify our community.”
If residents have business that requires an in-person appointment, town officials ask that they contact the department they need to conduct business with by phone to make an appointment.
Town Hall and the COA will remain closed until town leadership determines offices can be re-opened safely due to improved public health data.
Residents are reminded to always take the following precautions to prevent further spread of COVID-19 in the community:
- Remember that an infected individual can spread COVID-19 before they have symptoms, which is why social distancing — maintaining a minimum of 6 feet from others — is critical.
- Those who must go out are urged to:
- Avoid gathering in groups
- Maintain 6 feet from people outside your household
- Do not shake hands or hug
- Wash your hands often
- Those who are at a high risk for COVID-19, including those over the age of 65 and with underlying health conditions, are advised to stay home and avoid non-essential tasks and errands
- Wear a mask in indoor and outdoor spaces at all times.
- Face coverings should:
- Cover the nose and mouth
- Fit snugly and comfortably against the side of the face
- Be secured with either ties or ear loops
- Permit breathing without difficulty
- Be able to be washed and machine dried without damage. Face masks should be washed regularly depending on the amount of use.
For the latest COVID-19 updates for the Town of Ipswich, visit ipswichcovid19.com.