State Prepares For "Smart-Planned" Reopening

Governor Baker says that the state is seeing some progress when it comes to stopping the spread of the coronavirus. He says that for the last 15 days the state has seen what he called a “plateauing” in hospital stays because of the virus. But the Governor also conceded that the state has not seen the downward trend that he is hoping for.

Briefing reporters in Boston, the Governor said that one thousand workers are engaging in contact tracing. He asked residents to take the call if they get one from an “833 or 857” area code with MA Covid Team. He said those calls in finding people who may have had contact with others is vital to making sure that the spread of the virus does not continue.

The Governor says the state has filed the paperwork with FEMA for federal reimbursement for the expenses of the state during the crisis. A lot of that has to do with the seven million pieces of Personal Protection Equipment that has already been distributed. The Governor says that a lot more is needed.

The Governor said that the Task Force dealing with the reopening of the state continues its work. He said that the goal is to reopen in a safe and fluid manner to give businesses the best chance to be successful. The Governor says that means businesses that can open and perform with little contact with customers. He called the process of reopening “Smart and Planned”.

Baker said the increase in the fatality numbers Wednesday were concerning. He asked people not to lose track of the fact that each number is a life and a loss. He said testing is continuing with more than 11 thousand tests done Wednesday alone with 1963 positive cases, That translates to a 17 point 7 percent positive rate. He said that they are still in good shape with hospitalizations. Six percent of all cases end up in the hospital.

Meantime, Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders told reporters that a Walmart in Worcester had 41 positive cases of the Covid19 virus among the 400 employees. She said that they are working with UMass Medical Center to determine whether all of the employees should be tested. That store is closed for deep cleaning.

(Photo Credit: John Baiba, WHYN Radio)

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