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Town of Wrentham Provides Update on Rise in COVID-19 Cases Due to Local Cluster

WRENTHAM — Town Administrator and Emergency Management Director Kevin Sweet, the Wrentham Board of Health, King Philip Superintendent Paul Zinni and Wrentham Public Schools Superintendent Allan Cameron report that the Town of Wrentham has seen a rise in positive COVID-19 cases recently, and are urging the community to follow COVID-19 prevention guidance.

According to data shared by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health on Wednesday, there have been 15 positive cases of the virus in Wrentham over the past two weeks, a higher number of cases compared to the previous two weeks.

However, town officials can confirm that the 15 current positive cases belong to one “cluster” of cases tied to a single nursing home.

“We feel its imperative residents know that these cases are tied to one cluster in one facility; however, we are taking these numbers very seriously and are urging everyone, please, to closely follow COVID-19 guidance to protect themselves and others,” Town Administrator Sweet said. “Wear your mask in public, practice social distancing from others outside your household, wash your hands frequently, and please, if you feel sick or are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms, stay home.”

Wrentham Public Schools will continue following its hybrid learning model tomorrow, as the cases are limited to one cluster in one facility. King Philip students are currently following a remote learning schedule and will continue to do so, with plans to move to a hybrid learning model later this year as long as public health data supports the transition.

Gov. Charlie Baker, in response to a statewide rise in positive cases, implemented several efforts and stricter guidelines which went into effect Tuesday, Aug. 11. These included a reduction in the maximum number of people permitted at outdoor gatherings on both public and private property from 100 to 50 and a requirement that people wear face coverings whenever more than 10 people from different households gather.

The announcement by Gov. Baker reinforces an earlier order issued in May, which requires everyone, exempting children under the age of two or those with an underlying health condition, to wear a mask in public when maintaining social distancing, a minimum of six feet from others, is not feasible.

Indoor gatherings remain limited to groups of 25 or fewer people under Gov. Baker’s increased restrictions.

Restaurants have also been barred from selling alcoholic beverages for on-site consumption unless accompanied by a food order in an effort to ensure bars remain closed.

Fines or cease and desist orders may be issued by local or state public safety officials in the event hosts violate the limit on the number of people permitted at a gathering or the face covering order.

COVID-19 prevention tips from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health include:

  • Remember that an infected individual can spread COVID-19 before they have symptoms, which is why social distancing, maintaining a minimum of six feet from others, is critical.
  • Those who must go out are urged to:
    • Avoid gathering in groups
    • Maintain six feet from people outside your household
    • Do not shake hands or hug
    • Wash your hands often
  • Those who are at a high risk for COVID-19, including those over the age of 65 and with underlying health conditions, are advised to stay home and avoid non-essential tasks and errands
  • Wear a mask in indoor and outdoor spaces where social distancing from people outside your household is not possible. This does not apply to those under the age of two and with underlying health conditions.
  • Face coverings should:
    • Cover the nose and mouth
    • Fit snugly and comfortably against the side of the face
    • Be secured with either ties or ear loops
    • Permit breathing without difficulty
    • Be able to be washed and machine dried without damage. Face masks should be washed regularly depending on the amount of use.

For more information about COVID-19 prevention and symptoms, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website here and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health website here.