Editor’s Note: Today’s case count and an announcement about re-opening Town Hall and the DPW from the Covid-19 Task Force and Town Manager Sarah Santon
The daily update is also available in the following places if you’d like to share with your friends:
As of today, June 12, 2020, there have been a total of two hundred forty-two (242) positive cases of COVID-19 reported to the Town of Bedford Board of Health by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MA DPH), of those, one hundred thirty-three (133) are Bedford residents not living in a healthcare/long term care setting. Forty (40) deaths of Bedford residents have been attributed to COVID-19. The total case number includes residents of the Town of Bedford, including but not limited to those in: single-family homes, apartments, the VA campus, Hanscom Air Force Base, special needs group homes and any and all other larger assisted living/care facilities in Bedford as reported to us by the MA DPH.
As you may be aware, long-term care facilities serving the elderly and congregate care facilities, house susceptible populations with underlying conditions who are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19. Increased testing occurs at these facilities and results in more positive cases being identified. As such, cities and towns with these facilities, like Bedford, experience elevated positive case counts and, unfortunately, deaths due to the vulnerability to COVID-19 of the populations within those facilities.
Seventy-seven (77) of the total Bedford cases have already recovered and have come off of isolation and there may other Bedford residents who would be considered persons under investigation in that they are symptomatic, have undergone testing but have not yet received results. There are other individuals impacted by COVID-19 in the community who have not sought medical attention, and/or have not been tested and are isolating at home regardless. Those individuals do not appear on the surveillance reports the Town receives from the MA DPH.
The Board of Health continues to do the appropriate follow-up and outreach to those residents and close contacts known to us and the VA is conducting follow-up and contact tracing of the Veterans under their care. Many of the identified close contacts of some of the Bedford cases never exhibited symptoms, have completed their required quarantine period, and have been released from quarantine by the Board of Health.
Please note, in part to alleviate the community concern, the VA does do a daily report of their numbers, which includes inpatients, outpatients, and staff, many of whom do not call Bedford home. The information can be found here: https://www.accesstocare.va.gov/Healthcare/COVID19NationalSummary
Reopening of Town Hall and the Department of Public Works, by Appointment Only
On Monday, June 15, Town Hall at 10 Mudge Way, and the Department of Public Works, 314 The Great Road, will reopen to the public on an appointment-only basis. Town Center Building, 12 Mudge Way will remain closed to the public until further notice. The Bedford Free Public Library looks to begin curbside book pick up the week of June 22nd. More to come!
Beginning Monday, residents will be able to call, or e-mail, each department to schedule an appointment. No more than 10 residents will be allowed into the building at one time, and residents will be required to sign-in, for contact tracing purposes. Residents are encouraged to accomplish services online, if possible.
Town Hall may look a bit different, as the building has been equipped with floor markings for social distancing, anti-bacterial sanitizer stations, and Plexiglas barriers. Hallways have been marked using one-way arrows.
For those coming to Town Hall, please use the front entrance with the ramp to enter Town Hall, and side doors will be used for exit-only.
Each department offers a myriad service online. Need a building permit? Residents and contractors can now log-online to register your project and receive an e-building permit. Need to pay your taxes? Our online payment system is easy and instant. Or! If you prefer to pay in person, the Town has a secure lock box outside the front doors of Town Hall that is checked multiple times a day.
We appreciate everyone’s collective patience as we navigate this new world of municipal services and reopening. We are looking forward to reopening Town Hall, and DPW, on Monday, and happy to help with any questions
Stay healthy…and wash your hands as often as possible!