** COVID INFORMATION **

CDC: Find local COVID-19 Guidance (Community levels and prevention steps by county)

For current information regarding the COVID-19 Vaccine for Massachusetts, please visit: https://www.mass.gov/covid-19-vaccine-in-massachusetts

What to do if you have COVID-19 or have been exposed to COVID-19, Click HERE


For COVID Vaccination sites, Click HERE
(Vaccinations For Homebound residents, Click HERE)
 

For COVID Testing Locations, Click HERE

Get free at-⁠home COVID-⁠19 tests
Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order 4 free at-⁠home COVID-⁠19 tests. The tests are completely free. Orders will usually ship in 7-12 days.
 

STAYING HEALTHY

Residents are advised to continue taking many of the same steps they do to help prevent colds and the flu, including:
  • Wash hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes and face.
  • Clean things that are frequently touched (like doorknobs and countertops) with household cleaning spray or wipes.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue or the inside of your elbow.
  • Stay home when feeling sick.
  • At-risk populations including older adults and people who have serious chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease should follow the additional recommendations from the CDC concerning what actions they should take.

MENTAL HEALTH

Take care of your emotional health and help others do the same. If you need emotional support during these stressful times:
 
  • Call 2-1-1 and choose the “CALL2TALK” option.
  • Samaritans is continuing operations 24/7, as always. Call or text their 24/7 helpline any time at 877-870-4673.
  • Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741
  • The Disaster Distress Helpline, 1-800-985-5990, is a 24/7, 365-day-a-year, national hotline dedicated to providing immediate crisis counseling for people who are experiencing emotional distress related to any natural or human-caused disaster, including disease outbreaks like COVID-19. This toll-free, multilingual, and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories. Text TALKWITHUS to 66746 to connect with a trained crisis counselor.
  • Massachusetts Emergency Services Program/Mobile Crisis Intervention (ESP/MCI) - 1-877-382-1609 (read more about this program)
  • MassSupport - Free COVID-19 Counseling and Support
    • Phone: 1 (888) 215–4920
    • Phones answered M-F 9am-6pm

 

STATE AND FEDERAL RESOURCES

Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MA DPH)
The MA DPH website is updated constantly with the latest guidance, including printable fact sheets in multiple languages
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

COVID Vaccine – FAQ’s

Can a COVID-19 vaccine make me sick with COVID-19?

No. None of the authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines or COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States contain the live virus that causes COVID-19. This means that a COVID-19 vaccine cannot make you sick with COVID-19.

There are several different types of vaccines in development. All of them teach our immune systems how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19. Sometimes this process can cause symptoms, such as fever. These symptoms are normal and are a sign that the body is building protection against the virus that causes COVID-19. Learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work.

It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity (protection against the virus that causes COVID-19) after vaccination. That means it’s possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and still get sick. This is because the vaccine has not had enough time to provide protection.

After getting a COVID-19 vaccine, will I test positive for COVID-19 on a viral test?

No. Neither the recently authorized and recommended vaccines nor the other COVID-19 vaccines currently in clinical trials in the United States can cause you to test positive on viral tests, which are used to see if you have a current infection.​

If your body develops an immune response—the goal of vaccination—there is a possibility you may test positive on some antibody tests. Antibody tests indicate you had a previous infection and that you may have some level of protection against the virus. Experts are currently looking at how COVID-19 vaccination may affect antibody testing results.

If I have already had COVID-19 and recovered, do I still need to get vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine?

Yes. Due to the severe health risks associated with COVID-19 and the fact that re-infection with COVID-19 is possible, vaccine should be offered to you regardless of whether you already had COVID-19 infection. CDC is providing recommendations to federal, state, and local governments about who should be vaccinated first.

At this time, experts do not know how long someone is protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. The immunity someone gains from having an infection, called natural immunity, varies from person to person. Some early evidence suggests natural immunity may not last very long.

We won’t know how long immunity produced by vaccination lasts until we have more data on how well the vaccines work.

Both natural immunity and vaccine-induced immunity are important aspects of COVID-19 that experts are trying to learn more about, and CDC will keep the public informed as new evidence becomes available.

Will a COVID-19 vaccination protect me from getting sick with COVID-19?

Yes. COVID-19 vaccination works by teaching your immune system how to recognize and fight the virus that causes COVID-19, and this protects you from getting sick with COVID-19.

Being protected from getting sick is important because even though many people with COVID-19 have only a mild illness, others may get a severe illness, have long-term health effects, or even die. There is no way to know how COVID-19 will affect you, even if you don’t have an increased risk of developing severe complications. Learn more about how COVID-19 vaccines work.

Will a COVID-19 vaccine alter my DNA?

No. COVID-19 mRNA vaccines do not change or interact with your DNA in any way.

Messenger RNA vaccines—also called mRNA vaccines—are the first COVID-19 vaccines authorized for use in the United States. mRNA vaccines teach our cells how to make a protein that triggers an immune response. The mRNA from a COVID-19 vaccine never enters the nucleus of the cell, which is where our DNA is kept. This means the mRNA cannot affect or interact with our DNA in any way. Instead, COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work with the body’s natural defenses to safely develop immunity to disease. Learn more about how COVID-19 mRNA vaccines work. ​

At the end of the process, our bodies have learned how to protect against future infection. That immune response and making antibodies is what protects us from getting infected if the real virus enters our bodies.