The Amherst Public Health Department was alerted by the Massachusetts Virtual Epidemiological Network (MAVEN) and via email from the State Department of Public Health. on Thursday, March 26, that a member of the Amherst community had tested positive for COVID-19.
The patient first experienced symptoms on March 13th and self-quarantined with a household member. Testing was done by health care professionals in full personal protective gear at an outdoor testing location. The household member who tested positive will continue to isolate at home and the other household member is quarantined at home. There have been no other contacts because of the excellent precautions that were taken.
“I am grateful this individual is recovering, and we wish all members of the household a healthy recovery,” stated Town Manager Paul Bockelman. “This is the first case in Amherst, but it won’t be the last. We all must work together, making sacrifices in what we want to do, to limit the spread of this virulent pandemic.”
Amherst Health Director Julie Federman added, “This case reinforces the need that every member of our community must practice social distancing by staying home as much as possible. I commend these individuals for taking excellent cautionary steps by staying home. That was a real service to the community.”
As a reminder, the Town asks that residents continue practicing social distancing and other mitigating strategies, such as:
- Washing your hands with soap and water frequently
- Staying home and avoiding close contact with others (especially those who are sick)
- Staying home if you’re sick
- Covering coughs & sneezes
- Cleaning & disinfecting high touch surfaces
All Amherst residents are asked to follow these measures in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 and by doing so, help to prevent the overwhelming of our local medical facilities. Evidence now shows that no age group is immune to COVID-19. We all play a part in the public health of our community.
Updates on all COVID-19 related news from the Town and School Districts at a new COVID-19 community resource website. www.amherstcovid19.org as well as the Town homepage www.amherstma.gov. Bockelman requests community members to please share with the Town any resources or information that would be useful to them for inclusion on this website.