Topics: Health

ORLEANS – A new urgent care facility is on schedule to open its doors this spring at the site of the former Lobster Claw restaurant on Route 6A. Ground broke last month on the yet-to-be-named facility, which will be located at 42 Route 6A. The 6,500-square-foot center is being built as part of an extensive $125 million capital campaign announced by Cape Cod Healthcare Jan. 4. Plans for the new center show a...

Nauset High Clinic Draws Anti-Vax Protesters

By: Ryan Bray

EASTHAM – A vaccine clinic at Nauset Regional High School Jan. 13 drew protestors to school property in the morning and afternoon. Nauset High Principal Chris Ellsasser said that eight people protested the clinic with signs outside the main entrance before the start of school. A group of about 15 people returned in the afternoon to continue the protest, he said. About 190 people participated in the clinic. ...

Mask Rules Return As Omicron Rampages

By: Alan Pollock , Ryan Bray

With public health officials now observing “broad and aggressive spread of the Omicron variant” on Cape Cod, residents are being urged to get vaccinated and to mask up in public. Meeting in emergency session Thursday, the Chatham Board of Health ordered the mandatory use of masks in all stores, restaurants and other indoor public spaces, starting Friday. In its own special session Thursday, the Orleans health ...

Masks Mandated In Harwich Municipal Buildings

By: William F. Galvin

HARWICH – The board of health has implemented an emergency order mandating that masks to be worn in all town buildings. The board also issued a public advisory recommending masks be worn in all indoor public spaces. The board met on Dec. 28 and approved the emergency mask order for town buildings effective Thursday, Dec. 30. The advisory recommending masks in indoor public spaces was effective Dec. 29. The ...

Health: Omicron Rampaging, Mask Rules Returning

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Driven by the hyper-contagious Omicron variant, COVID-19 numbers are spiking across the Lower Cape, the state and the nation. And with many of those testing positive having already received two or three doses of the vaccine, public health officials are getting back to basics, encouraging or requiring the use of masks indoors. Following the lead of Harwich last week (see related story), the Chatham Bo...

On a week when holiday gatherings will begin to peak, public health officials on the Lower Cape and across the nation are reporting a continued spike in COVID-19 cases and a shortage of testing capacity. While the current case surge is likely related to the Delta variant, the extremely contagious Omicron variant is becoming dominant, they say. “We’d all be naive if we were to think that Omicron is not yet on t...

Some Progress Evident In Illegal Junkyard Cleanup

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — While acknowledging that property owner John McGrath has made efforts to clean up scrap metal, car parts, furniture and other refuse from the edge of his land along Mill Hill Road, the health board aims to keep the pressure up when it comes to cleaning up the illegal junkyard. On Monday, Health and Natural Resources Director Robert Duncanson said that there has been some improvement in the condition ...

Get Booster Shot Now, Officials Urge

By: Alan Pollock

With COVID-19 cases now clearly surging across the region, public health officials at all levels of government are urging people to get their booster doses of the vaccine. But doing so can require a little patience. In Lower Cape towns, across the county and statewide, case counts have been climbing steadily for several weeks, and all people over the age of 18 are now eligible for free booster shots, provided ...

ORLEANS -- When it comes to bringing on new members, Orleans Fire Chief Geof Deering said Monday that his department follows a simple but important rule of thumb. "Hire for character. Train for skill," he said. The department welcomed two new firefighters during an awards ceremony Dec. 6 in the Nauset Regional Middle School auditorium. The ceremony also recognized seasoned department members, as well as oth...

High school students experiencing mental health issues and substance use disorders often end up suspended from school as part of the school’s disciplinary process. But a different approach calls for targeted intervention for those students, rather than just sending them home. South Chatham-based Behavioral Health Innovators, Inc. (BHI) is the recipient of a $101,000 grant from the New York-based Peter and Eliza...

Rev. Wesley Williams: Faith In A Better Future Together

By: Jennifer Sexton-Riley

Rev. Wesley Williams of Orleans, retired minister of the Orleans Methodist Church, doesn't look upon retirement as a time to just relax and watch the world go by. On the contrary, Rev. Williams serves as convener of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Action Team of the Nauset Interfaith Association, and he has recently been named as a new director on the 15-member board of directors of Outer Cape Health Services (OCHS)....

COVID Boosters: Who’s Eligible?

By: Alan Pollock

There seem to be new headlines every day describing which group of people are now eligible to receive which COVID-19 vaccine. Some people can now get booster shots, depending on their age, health and occupation. There is even talk now about a possible fourth shot for some people, even as public health officials work to get first doses into many arms. Let’s sort it out. Initial doses of the vaccine are currentl...

ORLEANS – Remote and hybrid meetings have moved to the forefront during the COVID-19 pandemic, and they might stay there in the long term. Governor Charlie Baker in June extended Open Meeting Law provisions allowing hybrid and remote meetings through April 1. But Town Administrator John Kelly said the usefulness of Zoom and the internet in conducting government meetings could factor into the town’s future plan...

Health officials are sharing encouraging news about COVID-19 case counts, but say it’s too early to loosen requirements for mask-wearing. “The numbers have been going down,” Chatham Health and Natural Resources Director Robert Duncanson told the health board Monday. Twelve cases were reported in the first week of September, then seven and nine cases, and just five cases in the final week of the month. “And tha...

Canning Retires As Orleans’ First Health Agent

By: Ryan Bray

ORLEANS — Wednesday, Sept. 29 was by any measure a typical day in the Orleans Health Department. Employees answered phones and helped customers, while Bob Canning, the town’s longtime health agent, sat at his desk in his office overlooking the parking lot outside of town hall. Of course, when Canning was hired in 1984, none of this existed. Looking back on his career in town, he can recall in vivid detail his ...

Heart Association Honors Chatham Fire For Cardiac Care

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — There’s no good place to suffer a sudden cardiac emergency. But if it happens in Chatham, take heart: you’re likely to get the best possible emergency cardiac care. The American Heart Association has awarded the Chatham Fire/Rescue Department its Life Line Silver Plus Achievement Award for taking certain specific steps to improve care for victims of severe heart attacks. The annual designation was...