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February 9, 2021
Under Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 111, section 122, the Winchester Board of Health is charged with protecting the public health of the Town of Winchester including adopting rules and regulations relating to the COVID-19 pandemic.Our mission is to protect the well-being of our residents and optimize public health in the Town of Winchester.During this unprecedented time, we must focus all of our energy on defeating this pandemic and the challenges associated with it.While Winchester now has a positivity rate trending downward and is “yellow” designation by MDPH for Winchester, we would like to remind the community that the state's order limiting gatherings is still in effect. The order caps indoor gatherings at 10 people and outdoor gatherings at 25 people. It applies to private homes as well as, public spaces. Additionally, public health experts continue to advise that people avoid gathering indoors with members outside their households, regardless of the number of people present.Recently in Winchester, there has been a cluster of cases associated with maskless gatherings that exceed the state's limits and involve people from multiple households. As a community, we need to work together and follow safety guidelines to contain any further spread. Please continue practicing the preventative behaviors that have helped keep our students and teachers in school and our community safe.• Wear a face covering over your nose and mouth whenever you are in public, or in the presence of people who are not in your immediate household.• Wash your hands and avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.• Maintain 6 feet distance or more from anyone who is not a member of your immediate household (people you live with) regardless of whether anyone is wearing a mask.• Limit non-essential travel as much as possible. Staying home is the safest way to keep you, your family, and your community safe. If you do travel, please follow the MA Travel Form, including testing or quarantine, upon returning.Thank you to our entire community for working together to achieve a common goal. Our actions affect everyone. The vast majority - are doing exactly what they are supposed to be doing and have made great sacrifice.As we enter February school vacation this month, we must all be vigilant, responsible and accountable for our actions.• If you see, hear or know of any unsafe gatherings or events, you may confidentially contact the Health Department at email@example.com. If off-hours you may also contact the police department at 781-729-1214.• If one of our contact tracers calls you, please answer their questions truthfully and listen to their instructions. This is important in preventing the spread of the virus. We want to make sure you and your family stay healthy.• For the latest information on state-wide Covid-19 data, please refer to the MDPH COVID-19 daily dashboard. For information on the number of cases in Winchester, see the COVID-19 dashboard at www.winchester.us/coronavirus.Sincerely,Shannon Bottari, M.D., Chair of the Winchester Board of HealthCathy Donaghey, Vice Chair of the Winchester Board of HealthNelson Aquino, CRNA, Member of the Winchester Board of Health