The daily rise in COVID-19 cases remains in the single digits on Cape Cod as the month comes to a close, marking six months of the coronavirus in the region.
“The last seven days have all been in single digits,” state Senator Julian A. Cyr (D-Truro) said during a conference call with members of the media Thursday, August 27. “Things appear to be stable.”
He said he was presenting the health data with a word of caution as the weather gets cooler, since cooler weather typically means people will soon be spending more time indoors. He stressed it continues to be important for people to wear masks and maintain social distancing practices.
During the call, representatives from regional transportation companies spoke about how the pandemic has affected ridership and business in general. Thomas S. Cahir spoke for the Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority, Robert B. Davis spoke for the Steamship Authority and Michael Glasfeld spoke for the Bay State Cruise Company.
Mr. Cahir said the impact has been felt across the country when it comes to transportation companies. He said the CCRTA has continued to run as an essential service and has adapted operations to serve their riders more effectively.
For example, they revised schedules to accommodate the early shopping hours that had been designated for elderly shoppers. The CCRTA has also taken the safety guidelines very seriously.
“All the people who access our service are aware of that,” Mr. Cahir said.
Ridership for the CCRTA is low compared to last year, with 8,000 riders this past week compared to the same week last year where there were more than 20,000 riders..
Mr. Davis said the ridership at the Steamship Authority is smaller than in a typical year, though he said the company’s vessels are large enough to accommodate social distancing.
Mr. Glasfeld said Bay State Cruise’s ridership numbers are down as well and estimated they have 35 percent fewer people than last year. He noted people seem to be buying automobiles more than they had in previous years in response to the pandemic.
The Barnstable County Department of Human Services reported on Wednesday, August 26, there have been 1,834 confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 since the first case was reported on Cape Cod in March.
Of those cases, data released by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health on Thursday states 1,598 are confirmed positive cases. A total of 26 new cases of the disease have been confirmed on Cape Cod within the past two weeks.
The state no longer breaks out probable case data by county. Vaira Harik, deputy director of the county’s human services department, has been getting her data from the MAVEN health reporting system.
During the same two-week span, five people have died from COVID-19 on Cape Cod, bringing the region’s total to 165 deaths.
Along the Upper Cape, Bourne has had a total of 170 cases with seven positive tests reported in the past two weeks, Falmouth has had 241 total cases with four positive tests, Mashpee has had 77 total cases with three positive tests, and Sandwich has had 105 total cases with one positive test.
The state’s data do not indicate if the positive tests were all from new patients or if the positive tests were additional tests administered to patients who had tested positive previously.
Two COVID-19 patients are being treated at Cape Cod Hospital, though not in intensive care. Falmouth Hospital has no COVID-19 patients.
Across the state there have been 117,085 confirmed cases of the disease, with an additional 9,671 cases identified as probable instances of the disease. More than 2 million nasal swab tests have been administered to 1.6 million people statewide.
The average age of COVID-19 patients in Massachusetts over the past two weeks is 38 years old, while the average age of a person who has died from the disease in the state is 85 years old. No one under the age of 30 has died from the disease in the state within the past two weeks.