Please click here to access the latest Town of Brewster updates on the Coronavirus

Brewster Cumulative Cases: 553 (110 in long-term care facilities)
Please note - # of cases may differ from state or county totals based on data collection methods. Long term care facility data reported to the state database includes all residents and staff tested at the facility. Brewster totals only include residents and staff that reside in Brewster. Click here for a chart of cases by date.

The Brewster Town Offices are available by email and phone Monday through Friday 8:30am to 4pm and are open to the public Tuesday & Thursday. Inspectional services are available, click here for more information.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

The coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) is a contagious disease that is infecting people across the United States. This webpage will provide Brewster residents with information about Town activities related to the coronavirus, as well as trustworthy sources of additional information.

What is Coronavirus and How Does It Spread?
Coronavirus is a respiratory infection that can be spread from one person to another. It appears to spread between people who are in close contact with each other (within about 6 feet) and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

Coronavirus Symptoms
This coronavirus (COVID-19) causes respiratory (lung) infection. Symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • In more serious case, pneumonia (a lung infection) may develop

Coronavirus Prevention
There are actions you and your family can take to protect yourselves from the coronavirus:

  • Wear a mask or face covering in any public setting (indoors or outdoors) and when in the presence of others other than your household family members.
  • Wash your hands frequently, for at least 20 seconds, with soap and water. If soap and water aren’t available, use hand sanitizer with an alcohol concentration of at least 60%
  • Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Put distance between yourself and others if we experience coronavirus in our community – especially if you are at higher risk of getting sick. Older adults and people with serious chronic medical conditions are at higher risk.
  • If you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve.
  • Routinely clean hard surfaces and areas where germs may collect.

Coronavirus Treatment
There are no treatments or vaccine for COVID-19. Patients can receive treatment to relieve symptoms - for example, medications for cough and fever.

Coronavirus Checklist for Getting Your Home Ready
Review this CDC guidance so your home is prepared. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/home/checklist-household-ready.html

Travel from Out of State and High Risk Areas

  • If you recently returned from travel to out-of-state areas or overseas, the Center for Disease Control and MA Dept. of Public Health request that you self-quarantine for a period of fourteen (14) days from the date you entered back into Massachusetts.

Coronavirus Information Resources

A Caution About Untrustworthy Coronavirus Information
Make sure you get your information from trusted sources, and that you follow guidance from the CDC, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and the Brewster Health Department.

Self-Quarantine
In some cases, people may be directed to “self-quarantine” if they are suspected of having the coronavirus or recently traveled to a country with many cases.

  • Self-quarantine (or home isolation) means you:
    • Stay at home except for getting medical care.
    • Avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, and taxis.
    • Stay away from other people and pets in your home and use a separate bathroom if possible.
    • No visitors should come to your home.
    • If you need medical care, call ahead for guidance unless it is an emergency.
    • Avoid sharing household items.
    • Wash your hands frequently.
    • Wear a facemask if around other people.
    • Cover your sneezes and coughs with a tissue.
    • Monitor for any symptoms, or worsening symptoms.
    • Discontinue self-quarantine only in consultation with a health care provided.

The Brewster Health Department

  • If you have questions about the coronavirus, contact the Brewster Health Department at (508) 896-3701 ext. 1120 or by email.

Amy von Hone, Health Director
avonhone@brewster-ma.gov

Sherrie McCullough, Assistant Health Director
smccullough@brewster-ma.gov

Tammi Mason, Senior Department Assistant
tmason@brewster-ma.gov
 

 

BREWSTER TOWN OFFICES AND LADIES LIBRARY TO REOPEN TO PUBLIC & RECYCLING CENTER TO ACCEPT FEE ITEMS

Beginning Tuesday March 9, 2021, Town offices will re-open to the public.  Town offices at Town Hall, the Department of Natural Resources, the Water Department, and Department of Public Works, will be open on Tuesdays and Thursdays during normal hours of operation. Residents and visitors are strongly encouraged to continue to access services remotely as they have for much of the past year. Routine payments and applications can continue to be left in the dropboxes at building entrances.  When Town offices are closed, phone messages and email correspondence will be answered promptly by Town staff. 

Consistent with past Town protocols and current State directives, all people entering Town offices to conduct business must wear a mask or face covering, unless under the age of 5 or unable to due to a medical condition. Only one person will be allowed in each office at a time. People who are waiting to be served must maintain a distance of 6’ from the person in front of them.  Before entering an office, you must sign-in for contact tracing purposes. If you have a specific issue or concern, please call ahead and make an appointment with the appropriate department. If you are looking to review plans or files, you must make an appointment and you will be provided a separate space.

Starting Thursday March 11, the Recycling Center will once again accept fee items such as yard waste, electronics, construction debris, scrap metal, mattresses, etc.

The Brewster Ladies Library plans to reopen for limited Grab & Go service starting Tuesday March 23.  More details to follow.

Cape Cod Regional Vaccine Consortium

1. What is the Cape Cod COVID-19 Vaccine Consortium?

Cape Cod COVID-19 Vaccine Consortium, comprised of Cape Cod Healthcare (CCHC), Barnstable County (BC), Cape Cod Delegation, the towns and community health centers of Cape Cod, with support from Cape Cod Community College (4Cs), have established a large-scale vaccination site at the Cape Cod Community College gymnasium. Cape Cod Healthcare and Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment will operate the vaccination site as of March 1. It will have the capacity to administer more than 750 vaccines per day, five days per week, pending supply from the state.  

2. How are Barnstable County and Cape Cod Healthcare working together at the same location to provide vaccines?

Barnstable County and Cape Cod Healthcare will share the site and schedule residents independently from one another.

3. How will eligible residents make an appointment for a Barnstable County Clinic at Cape Cod Community College?

Barnstable County's clinics at Cape Cod Community College will be set up just like any of the regional clinics that Barnstable County holds for eligible residents. Clinics will be announced 24 hours in advance, and appointments will be made using the state's scheduling platform, PrepMod.

4. How will eligible residents make an appointment through Cape Cod Healthcare at Cape Cod Community College?

At this time, Cape Cod Healthcare will not be offering appointments to the public. Cape Cod Healthcare will be contacting (by phone) the most vulnerable population of older residents identified by the local Boards of Health. These residents do not need to be patients of Cape Cod Healthcare. 

5. What is the criteria used for tracking the most vulnerable residents on Cape Cod?

With support from councils on aging, police, fire, and other departments in their respective towns, local boards of health are working to identify the most vulnerable older adults in each of their individual municipal boundaries. Elder Services of Cape Cod (the region's ASAP) is also being consulted to cross-reference and reach all vulnerable older adults. 

Boards of health within each town will identify vulnerable older adults by town via the below plan to efficiently administer the vaccine to older adults left behind by the current vaccine offerings. Vulnerable older adults will be identified into two tracks:

1. Track One: Individuals who need assistance making a vaccination appointment but are able to travel to Cape Cod Community College. Track One individuals include thosewho are medically vulnerable and/or with limited computer abilities or access.

a. This list will be provided to Cape Cod Healthcare, who will proactively reach out to and schedule these appointments at the Cape Cod Community College site. 

2. Track Two: Individuals who are homebound, who do not drive, reside in senior housing, have other confining/limiting factors, etc.

a. This list will be provided to Catchment Area Leads (Outer Cape Health Services; Community Health Center of Cape Cod; Town of Barnstable), who will proactively reach out to and schedule appointments at community health centers, home visits, regional sites, or another location.  Homebound is defined as Residents of Barnstable County that have functional impairments that prevent them from leaving their homes. This population generally includes older people with lower-than-average income levels and serious medical problems like dementia, advanced heart conditions, or arthritis. Pertaining to COVID-19, this elder residential demographic is designated as homebound due to these medical challenges/disabilities.  

6. Is Cape Cod Healthcare receiving vaccine from the state? How much? Which vaccine? 

Yes, in the last week of February, Cape Cod Hospital was added to the state's list of approved hospitals to receive and administer the COVID-19 vaccine. They are receiving a total of 2,000 doses per week. Cape Cod Healthcare administered 2,000 first doses at the Cape Cod Melody Tent during the week of 2/22 and another 2,000 doses during the week of 3/1, in addition to 2,000-second doses. Cape Cod Healthcare is currently receiving Moderna; This may change.

7. How much and which vaccine is Barnstable County receiving from the state?

The County is receiving 1,070 doses per week. The County is currently receiving the Pfizer and Johnson and Johnson vaccine, and this may change.

8. Will Barnstable County continue to also operate regional sites across Cape Cod in addition to operating clinics at Cape Cod Community College?

Yes, Barnstable County plans to continue operating regional vaccination sites in Eastham, Falmouth, Orleans, and Truro.

9. What are the upcoming Barnstable County clinics?

Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment will be vaccinations on

  • Tuesday 3/9 and Thursday 3/11 from 10:00 AM-3:00 PM at Cape Cod Community College(single dose clinic – Johnson and Johnson vaccine)
  • Wednesday, 3/10 from 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM at the Orleans DPW (2nd dose only – Pfizer vaccine)
  • Friday, 3/12 from 10:00 AM-2:00 PM at the Orleans Council on Aging (2nd dose only –Pfizer vaccine)

*Please note that Barnstable County’s vaccine schedule is developed week to week. 

10. What plans are being made to provide vaccines to our region's homebound?  

The Consortium is working with the COVID-19 Command Center & DPH to request additional vaccine supplies for homebound residents (~2,500 residents have been identified as homebound.) 

* Homebound is defined as Residents of Barnstable County that have functional impairments that prevent them from leaving their homes. This population generally includes older people with lower-than-average income levels and serious medical problems like dementia, advanced heart conditions, or arthritis. Pertaining to COVID-19, this elder residential demographic is designated as homebound due to these medical challenges/disabilities.  

11. How does the County ensure that first-dose people will not get an appointment at a second-dose clinic?

Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment screens and removes anyone who registers for their first dose at a second-dose clinic to ensure there is enough vaccine for the people who need a second dose. 

This information is provided by the Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment.  

 

 

 

Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line

Call 2-1-1 and follow prompts to reach
The Massachusetts Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line

Hours of Operations:

Monday to Friday

8:30 AM to 5:00 PM

  

The Massachusetts Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line is available in English and Spanish and will have translators available to support residents in approximately 100 additional languages. Individuals ages 75 and older will be able to speak to a representative live on the phone to assist them with an appointment through the state’s online system.

 

These representatives have the same access to appointments as on the public website; it will not give individuals access to additional appointments.

 

If no appointments are available, callers will have the option to be placed on a call back list for the mass vaccination sites. The caller will receive a call back when an appointment becomes available for them at a mass vaccination site, and the list will be called on a first-come, first-served basis.

 

The Massachusetts Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line is currently only for individuals ages 75 and older who cannot use or have difficulty accessing the internet and therefore are unable to schedule an appointment through the online platforms. The Massachusetts Vaccine Scheduling Resource Line is only able to support individuals with scheduling an appointment and representatives are not able to answer general questions about COVID-19 or provide individual health care advice.

 

The quickest and easiest way to schedule a vaccine appointment or check availability is to use the online system at mass.gov/covidvaccine.

Barnstable County Vaccine Update – 2/24/21

We wanted to reach out with a few updates and reminders regarding COVID-19 vaccine distribution on Cape Cod:

  • Vaccine availability on Cape Cod remains limited. Barnstable County is in constant communication with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, relaying the vital need for more vaccines to distribute locally. This need is especially great for our senior citizens. As the situation progresses, we ask that if you can travel off-Cape to a mass vaccination site, please get an appointment at one of those six locations. We realize that going off-Cape is inconvenient and challenging, but it's essential to leave the few local appointments for those who are less able/mobile. The mass vaccination sites are Gillette StadiumFenway Park, the DoubleTree in Danvers, the Eastfield Mall in Springfield, the Natick Mall, and the former Circuit City in Dartmouth. Availability is updated every Thursday.
  • We are currently prioritizing second-dose vaccine clinics and we will notify you when we have scheduled the next first-dose clinic. Please be patient and remember that we are receiving a small amount of vaccine locally. We have to take care of second doses before we can provide more first doses. 
  • 24-hour notifications will resume as soon first-dose clinics are scheduled. We will send an email notification 24 hours before registration opens for all first dose clinics so that you can plan accordingly.
  • If you are waiting to receive an email regarding your second dose of vaccine: it can take UP TO TWO WEEKS (14 DAYS) for the email inviting you to sign up for your second dose to be sent. You should also be checking your junk mail/spam folders regularly. If MORE than 14 days have passed and you still have not received an email, please call our COVID-19 Helpline at (774) 330-3001. IMPORTANT! Never share your second dose email with ANYONE. Doing so will adversely affect the ability of those who received their first dose through one of our clinics to successfully sign up for their second dose. Further, anyone who did not receive the first dose at one of our clinics will be turned away.

Thank you for your continued patience during this challenging time.
 

COVID Vaccine Update – 02/02/21

Barnstable County and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are currently experiencing a shortage of COVID-19 vaccine which is limiting our capacity to conduct vaccination clinics on Cape Cod.  Brewster, like most Cape communities, is working closely with the Barnstable County Health Department to conduct regional clinics across the Cape to accommodate our residents per the MA COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plan Massachusetts' COVID-19 vaccination phases | Mass.gov.  While the state plan, comprised of three phases, is now open for all of Phase 1 eligible residents and Phase 2 residents who are 75 years or older, access to the vaccine for Phase 2 residents on Cape Cod is currently limited.  As more vaccine becomes available, additional clinics will be advertised for those eligible in Phase 2.

Here are a few tips to help our residents navigate the current online registration processes:

Questions?  Call the Barnstable County Helpline at 774-330-3001,  Monday – Friday 8:30am – 4:30pm

Cape Cod Commission continues COVID-19 Recovery and Resiliency Workshop Series

Industry-specific education and information to help local businesses recover from the pandemic

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (February 23, 2021) – The Cape Cod Commission is pleased to announce the first round of industry-specific webinars in its COVID-19 Recovery and Resiliency Workshop Series, an initiative designed to assist Cape Cod business owners in navigating the economic impacts of the pandemic. 

Through the series, business owners will learn about recovery-related topics and will have an opportunity to provide feedback on key challenges they are facing, which will help to develop economic resilience toolkits for the community.  

The first round of industry-specific virtual workshops will introduce the Commission's broader business recovery and resiliency efforts and provide real examples of business resiliency and continuity to help local businesses identify effective pandemic-responsive strategies including digital marketing, eCommerce, and collaboration/networking practices. The series schedule is as follows: 

These industry-specific workshops will build on the first installment in the series held on February 18 2021 that focused on the current round of the Paycheck Protection Program and other pandemic-relief funding opportunities.   

This workshop series is funded by an Economic Development Assistance CARES Act grant. The Cape Cod Commission is working with Boston-based consultant Revby to facilitate the workshops, develop the economic resiliency toolkits, and identify further strategies for local economic recovery. 

All interested Cape Cod business owners are invited to attend this free workshop series, but space is limited, and registration is required. Business owners unable to attend their own industry's workshop are encouraged to participate in a different workshop that fits their schedule. For more information and to register, please visit cccom.link/business-recovery

Brewster Select Board and Town Administrator Join Cape Officials Urging State to Allocate More COVID-19 Vaccine to Barnstable County

February 12, 2021

The Honorable Charlie Baker
Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Massachusetts State House, Room 360
Boston, MA 02133

Dear Governor Baker,

We write with urgency and alarm regarding the inadequate supply of COVID-19 vaccine allocated to municipalities within Barnstable County. As elected and appointed officials at the state, municipal, and county level, we can tell you that the situation on the ground is untenable and must change.

Cape Cod may be Massachusetts’ most distinctive peninsula, but it is also the oldest county by age in the Commonwealth and the oldest county in New England. According to the 2019 American Community Survey data for Barnstable County, 13% of our population is aged 75 and older (27,666 residents), and nearly 17% is aged 65 to 74 (35,915 residents) – percentages more than twice that of the rest of the state. Since you extended vaccination into Phase 2, our shared constituents over the age of 75 have had to navigate a vaccination registration process where the fittest and most tech savvy get access to a vaccine and those more vulnerable are left out. A difficult to decipher website and a well-intentioned but overburdened 2-1-1 call system may work when vaccines are available in your community, but when the burden of scheduling a vaccination includes having to find transportation to a site over an hour's drive away, it becomes an immense hardship.

Demand for the vaccine and reliable information about accessing the vaccine on Cape Cod is very high. A hotline established by Barnstable County has received over 22,000 calls since its inception on January 19th. On February 3, the Cape Cod COVID-19 Response Task Force hosted a tele-town hall, where over 13,000 unique dials stayed on an hour-long call. Each of us have received hundreds of emails and calls with urgent pleas for help from constituents who cannot drive to Gillette Stadium or Dartmouth, who do not have access to internet or a computer, and/or who do not have friends and family nearby who are able to help arrange an appointment or help with transportation.

To date, approximately 22,000 doses of vaccine have been provided to Barnstable County, Cape Cod Healthcare, community health centers, and two municipalities. While 11.7% of Barnstable County residents have received the first dose of the vaccination, we worry this does not capture how many more adults over 75 there are in our communities. We will need 55,000 doses to vaccinate all Cape Codders aged 75 and older, assuming use of Moderna and Pfizer vaccines. This is a steep challenge, especially given the Commonwealth’s focus on an off-Cape mass vaccination program.

We urgently request your swift action on the following:

  • Establish a mass vaccination site at Cape Cod Community College, as discussed but never executed by your Administration. We are disappointed in your decision to forgo a state funded mass vaccination site on Cape Cod and urge reconsideration.
  • An increased allocation of vaccine to Barnstable County. The County has executed regional vaccine clinics in Eastham, Falmouth, Hyannis, and Orleans to date, with plans for a site in Truro in two weeks. However the County is only receiving 975 doses a week, although it is currently the only provider of large scale vaccination in the region. To execute these vaccination sites in a predictable way, the County needs a consistent and predictable supply of vaccine.
  • Delivery of vaccine to a consortium of local boards of health in Barnstable County. Local boards of health have coordinated with Councils on Aging, police, fire, and other departments in their respective towns to identify the most vulnerable older adults, and are doing so across town boundaries. Municipalities are working with Cape Cod Healthcare, community health centers, and Barnstable County to execute a plan to reach homebound and vulnerable older adults who are not able to access the current vaccine scheme. This consortium is prepared to vaccinate our most vulnerable residents, but we need vaccine to do so.

In the most significant vaccination effort in Massachusetts history, Cape Codders are being left behind. We have worked deliberately and collaboratively as a region to plan to provide vaccination to our residents. We simply need the state to allocate vaccine equitably based on demography. Please help us help ourselves.

Respectfully,
 

Julian Cyr
State Senator
Cape & Islands District

Sarah K. Peake
State Representative
4th Barnstable District

Timothy R. Whelan
State Representative
1st Barnstable District

Susan L. Moran
State Senator
Plymouth & Barnstable District

David T. Vieira
State Representative
3rd Barnstable District

Steven G. Xiarhos
State Representative
5th Barnstable District

Kip Diggs
State Representative
2nd Barnstable District

Dylan Fernandes
State Representative
Barnstable, Dukes & Nantucket District

Peter Lombardi
Town Administrator
Town of Brewster

Rodney C. Collins
Town Manager
Town of Mashpee

Jill R. Goldsmith
Town Manager
Town of Chatham

Charles Sumner
Town Manager
Town of Provincetown

Julian M. Suso
Town Manager
Town of Falmouth

Jacqueline Beebe
Town Administrator
Town of Eastham

George Dunham
Town Manager
Town of Sandwich

Darrin K. Tangeman
Town Manager
Town of Truro

Tony Schiavi
Town Administrator
Town of Bourne

Matthew Levesque
Town Council President
Town of Barnstable

Paula Schnepp
Town Council Vice President
Town of Barnstable

Debra Dagwan
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Eric R. Steinhilber
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Jen Cullum
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Tracy Shaughnessy
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Nikolas Atsalis
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Jessica Rapp Grassetti
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Kristine Clark
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Gordon Starr
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Paul Neary
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

David W. Bogan
Town Councilor
Town of Barnstable

Judith Froman
Select Board Chair
Town of Bourne

James L. Potter
Select Board Vice Chair
Town of Bourne

Peter Meier
Select Board Member
Town of Bourne

George Slade
Select Board Member
Town of Bourne
Bourne Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Dr. Mary Chaffee
Select Board Chair
Town of Brewster
Deputy Speaker
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Dave Whitney
Select Board Member
Town of Brewster

Cindy Bingham
Select Board Member
Town of Brewster

Benjamin deRuyter
Select Board Member
Town of Brewster

Ned Chatelain
Select Board Member
Town of Brewster

Shareen Davis
Select Board Chair
Town of Chatham

Peter K. Cocolis
Select Board Vice Chair
Town of Chatham

Cory Metters
Select Board Clerk
Town of Chatham

Jeffrey S. Dykens
Select Board Member
Town of Chatham

Dean P. Nicastro
Select Board Member
Town of Chatham

Christopher Flanagan
Select Board Chair
Town of Dennis

John W. Terrio
Select Board Vice Chair
Town of Dennis

Christopher Lambton
Select Board Member
Town of Dennis

Paul R. McCormick
Select Board Member
Town of Dennis

Jamie Demetri
Select Board Chair
Town of Eastham

Aimee Eckman
Select Board Member
Town of Eastham

Alexander Cestaro
Select Board Member
Town of Eastham

Arthur Autorino
Select Board Member
Town of Eastham

Jared K. Collins
Select Board Member
Town of Eastham

Megan English-Braga
Select Board Chair
Town of Falmouth

Nancy Robbins Taylor
Select Board Member
Town of Falmouth

Douglas Brown
Select Board Member
Town of Falmouth
Falmouth Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Douglas H. Jones
Select Board Member
Town of Falmouth

Samuel Patterson
Select Board Member
Town of Falmouth

Larry Ballantine
Select Board Chair
Town of Harwich

Steve Ford
Select Board Member
Town of Harwich

Ed McManus
Select Board Member
Town of Harwich

John Cotton
Select Board Chair
Town of Mashpee
Mashpee Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Thomas F. O’Hara
Select Board Chair
Town of Mashpee

Andrew Gottlieb
Select Board Member
Town of Mashpee

Carol A. Sherman
Select Board Member
Town of Mashpee

David Weeden
Select Board Member
Town of Mashpee

Kevin Galligan
Select Board Chair
Town of Orleans

Cecil E. Newcomb III
Select Board Member
Town of Orleans

Mefford Runyon
Select Board Member
Town of Orleans

Andrea Reed
Select Board Member
Town of Orleans

David Abramson
Select Board Chair
Town of Provincetown

Louise Venden
Select Board Member
Town of Provincetown

Lise King
Select Board Member
Town of Provincetown

John Golden
Select Board Member
Town of Provincetown

Robert Anthony
Select Board Member
Town of Provincetown

David J. Sampson
Select Board Member
Town of Sandwich

Charles M. Holden
Select Board Member
Town of Sandwich

Robert Weinstein
Select Board Chair
Town of Truro

Kristen Reed
Select Board Member
Town of Truro

Susan Areson
Select Board Member
Town of Truro

Janet Worthington
Select Board Member
Town of Truro

Stephanie Rein
Select Board Member
Town of Truro

Janet Reinhart
Select Board Chair
Town of Wellfleet

Helen Miranda Wilson
Select Board Member
Town of Wellfleet
County Commissioner Barnstable County

Mark R. Forest
Select Board Chair
Town of Yarmouth

Tracy Post
Select Board Member
Town of Yarmouth

Ron Bergstrom
County Commissioner
Barnstable County

Sheila Lyons
County Commissioner
Barnstable County

David Dunford
Orleans Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Randi Potash
Chatham Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Susan Warner
Yarmouth Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Brian O’Malley
Provincetown Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

Elizabeth Harder
Harwich Assembly Delegate
Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates

 

Barnstable County Clarifies COVID-19 Vaccination Process

January 27, 2021 – Barnstable, MA. Barnstable County Government seeks to clarify that although residents seventy-five years and older will be the next group eligible (Phase 2) to receive a COVID-19 vaccination beginning Monday, February 1, most will not find an available appointment immediately on Cape Cod. The reasons for the delay in the timeline are twofold: we are still in the process of vaccinating the initial eligible groups in Phase 1, and we do not yet have an adequate supply of the vaccine.

Barnstable County and all 15 local boards of health are committed to vaccinating our residents as soon as we receive the vaccine. Our policy is to register eligible candidates when we have their dose in-hand. Therefore, we will not immediately be making appointments for our residents ages 75 and up. When that time comes within the first few weeks of February, residents can search locations and register for their initial dose of vaccine on mass.gov/COVIDVaccineMap

The number of vaccinations we have for our eligible residents depends on several variables, including the availability of doses from the federal government and how quickly the state distributes that vaccine across Massachusetts. There are multiple vaccination sites planned for Phase 2 residents to receive the vaccine on Cape Cod, including five regional sites coordinated by Barnstable County. These are anticipated to be operational in the first or second week of February. Pharmacies and grocery stores have partnered with the Commonwealth and will begin distributing Phase 2 vaccine as well. These sites' ability to announce clinics or schedule appointments depends on whether the vaccine is in hand. If the vaccine has not yet been received or replenished, providers are not able to offer appointments.

It is important to note that we are still in the process of addressing the remainder of our Phase 1 eligible workers, which includes emergency responders, COVID-facing healthcare workers, workers and residents in congregate care settings, and non-COVID-facing healthcare workers. The vaccines we were given for this first group were rapidly administered during clinics held at the Orleans DPW. Some eligible workers were unable to get their vaccines due to a lack of supply that we are still trying to replenish. We will be holding additional Phase I clinics as soon as we have the vaccine to do so.

“We urge Cape Codders to do three things – to pay attention to where they fit into the phases and sub-phases, expect that there be delays in availability of appointments and operating clinics due to shortages in the vaccine, and to be patient,” Director of Barnstable County Health and Environment Sean O’Brien said. “We will make every effort to keep you informed.”

A common question among Phase 2 residents on Cape Cod is where they can get on a waitlist for the vaccine.

“By the end of Tuesday, the Barnstable County COVID-19 Helpline received a total of 7,500 phone calls since its inception on January 19, and those were largely from senior residents under the impression that they could register for a vaccine on Cape Cod right away,” said Bethany Traverse, Health Communications Project Specialist. “We want residents to know that our clinics have been planned and staff is ready to assist our most vulnerable residents – those 75 and older – in getting their much-needed vaccine. However, because vaccine allocation is so limited, and because Barnstable County does not know when or how many vaccines will be received, we cannot register anyone yet. We are also unable to keep a waitlist. We assure you, as soon as we have the vaccine in hand, we’ll let our eligible residents know by every means possible”. 

A map displaying locations where a resident can get vaccinations is accessible at mass.gov/COVIDVaccineMap and linked at www.barnstablecountyhealth.org. The map will be updated frequently, with more sites coming online in our region. So far, visitors to these webpages will see that several CVS, Walgreens, and Stop & Shop locations, as well as the Orleans DPW site (designated for Phase 1 eligible candidates only), have been added with links to register. Keep in mind that if a given site does not have the vaccine, registration will not be open.

Barnstable County would also like to remind residents across Cape Cod that as appointments become available for our senior citizens, help those who need it navigate the online vaccine registration process. If a senior in your life does not use the Internet, such as a parent, grandparent, neighbor, or friend, please reach out to assist them. When registration is open for our County clinics, our COVID-19 Helpline staff will be available at (774) 330-3001 to help anyone who needs it. 

As vaccine supply becomes steadier and we embark on vaccinating those most vulnerable to this virus in Phase 2, please also remember to continue taking precautions to inhibit community spread. Visit www.barnstablecountyhealth.org for regular updates.

Barnstable County and our 15 local boards of health are working hard every day to get our residents vaccinated as quickly and efficiently as possible. We are eager to receive the vaccine from the State of Massachusetts so that we can put months of planning and coordination to work for you. We are all in this together.