Topics: Health

Health Board Sees Progress At Schoolhouse Pond

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Despite severe overcrowding Monday, the board of health says that parking restrictions and other efforts are reducing congestion on the beach at Schoolhouse Pond. The board ordered additional parking deterrents in a bid to keep COVID-19 from spreading among beachgoers who are not social distancing or wearing masks. On Friday, the town installed signs along Sam Ryder Road limiting parking to residen...

HARWICH — The Harwich Historical Society is looking for people to become a part of the town’s history by sharing first-hand experiences about living through the coronavirus pandemic. The society is collecting these experiences to help future generations understand what it was like living through this time. “Your observations now can be the primary sources for future historians,” Harwich Historical Society Dire...

Health: Understanding COVID-19 Testing

By: Alan Pollock

If you’ve thought about getting tested for the novel coronavirus, you’ve got some challenges to consider, and some homework to do. There are three general types of tests — molecular, antibody and antigen — and each has advantages and drawbacks. But experts say that for now, there continue to be limits on the availability of tests and the speed with which they provide results. The gold standard for testing r...

Harwich Chamber Cancels Fall Events

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — This year's Fall for Harwich and the town's traditional Christmas events are not likely to resemble the celebrations of the past, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On Tuesday, the chamber of commerce board of directors decided to cancel September's fireworks and Hometown parade, centerpieces of Fall for Harwich, and indicated that the annual Christmas stroll will be substantially changed and downsized. ...

On Friday, Gov. Charlie Baker announced a new travel order that requires travelers coming to Massachusetts from most U.S. states to quarantine for 14 days or face fines of up to $500 per day. But with most of this season’s summer visitors to the Lower Cape coming from elsewhere in the state, the economic impact of the new order is expected to be minor. With limited exceptions, the order targets travelers comin...

Eastwind Gallery Celebrates ‘Cape Cod Pandemic Heroes’

By: Jennifer Sexton-Riley

ORLEANS – Painter Patty Barnes will be Eastwind Gallery’s featured artist through Saturday, Aug. 1 as the gallery presents the first showing of her series “Cape Cod Pandemic Heroes.” The series of oil paintings celebrates brave Cape Codders in many different occupations who have continued to work throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Barnes, who describes herself as primarily a landscape painter and whose work incl...

All Eyes Watch For COVID-19 Uptick

By: Alan Pollock

As we pass the two-week mark after the Independence Day holiday weekend, public health officials are watching for any sign of an increase in COVID-19 cases on Cape Cod. And some evidence may be emerging. Key pandemic indicators in Barnstable County remain low, with just 13 new cases reported Monday. But the trend is beginning to rise. The rolling one-week average of new cases Monday stood at eight, up ...

Parking lots and baseball fields have become places of worship as local churches move services outdoors, providing at least some measure of personal connections to congregations that have been meeting virtually for months. Last Sunday, members of St. Christopher's Episcopal Church met in-person for the first time since the pandemic shutdown. About 110 members of the church participated in a socially distant ou...

ORLEANS – With every day the COVID-19 pandemic continues, finding good news can be a challenge, but for small business owners in Orleans, there is hope courtesy of the Small Business Hardship Fund. According to Noëlle Pina, executive director of the Orleans Chamber of Commerce, funds are coming from the Orleans Police Relief Association in order to help small businesses stay afloat during difficult times. ...

With health departments in several states and in New York City reporting a higher-than-expected prevalence of COVID-19 among Black people, and news that people of color are dying at a younger age than others afflicted with the illness, there is troubling news about race and the pandemic on Cape Cod. Using information made public after the New York Times sued the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Barnstable...

CHATHAM — At Schoolhouse Pond bathing beach, crowded conditions are nothing new. The small stretch of sand, which gets smaller when the water table is high, is Chatham’s only residents-only beach. But during the pandemic, those close quarters are a public health concern. State regulations designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19 require beachgoers to maintain six feet of social distance, and groupings of...

Pandemic Doesn’t Slow Busy Holiday Weekend

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Judging from the crowded parking lots, busy shops and restaurants, and the steady traffic on roadways and waterways, the Independence Day weekend was a busy one – despite COVID-19. As of early this week, there had been 150 deaths from the novel coronavirus in Barnstable County, with a case count of over 1,500 people since the start of the pandemic. “The public health data continues to show us po...

Harwich Town Offices Begin Opening Doors

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — With the third phase of Gov. Charlie Baker’s Reopening of Massachusetts, municipal government became more accessible on Monday. The doors to town hall and a number of other public buildings are open, but in many instances appointments are required ahead of time to meet with town staff. Town Administrator Joseph Powers said the town has been working on compliance with the mandatory safety standards...

CHATHAM — For many, the end of 2020 will be a milestone worth celebrating. But because of the pandemic, they won’t be marking New Year’s Eve the usual way at First Night Chatham. Late last week, event organizers announced that because of the pandemic, First Night Chatham will not be held as a live event. “It’s a tremendous disappointment,” First Night spokesman John Reed said. More than 300 volunteers loo...

Responding to the alarming resurgence of COVID-19 in other parts of the country, Gov. Charlie Baker Tuesday let stand a requirement that out-of-state visitors must self-quarantine for 14 days. But he lifted that requirement for people visiting from elsewhere in New England, from New York or New Jersey. Local tourism officials say the change is not likely to have a great impact, since most of the visitors curre...

COA Making Adjustments To Address The Needs Of Seniors

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH — The council on aging, working with the Academic Public Health Volunteer Corps, will be reaching out to senior citizens to better understand their unmet needs. The COA has been functioning without a social services coordinator since April 24 when Susanna Keith resigned to take a new job closer to family in Maine. Because the town has a hiring freeze in place due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic...