Coronavirus (COVID-19) Latest updates
(last updated 06/4/2020)I
STATE OF EMERGENCY, Effective March 16, 2020 - Per the Governor Baker’s recent orders, will remain in effect through June 1, 2020 (unless otherwise specified), at which time they will be revisited.
Information regarding Governor Baker’s Phased Reopening can be found here: http://chicopeema.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=483
“Throughout this outbreak, we have consistently reminded our residents to get their information from trusted sources. Today we’re making that easier,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “With the addition of this new communication tool, we’re making it easier for everyone to stay informed about state actions and important announcements related to COVID-19.”
Stay informed - Text COVIDMA to 888777
The City of Chicopee continues to receive guidance from the Offices of Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Center for Disease Control (CDC) and local healthcare professionals on how to respond to, as well as treat and prevent the spread of COVID-19. We encourage you to check out the following information from the State of Massachusetts and the CDC.
Click on a button below to learn more:
Massachusetts #2-1-1 will provide real-time COVID-19 information, resources, and referrals in multiple languages.
We will update this information as it is provided to us. We will continue to monitor the virus information from our trusted sources and update protocols as necessary for our community’s overall health and well-being.
- TRAVEL GUIDANCE: Beginning March 27, all travelers arriving in Massachusetts are instructed to self-quarantine for 14 days. This guidance will be displayed as posters at service plazas along 1-90 eastbound, distributed as flyers at major transportation hubs, and posted on highway message boards. Visitors are instructed not to travel to Massachusetts if they are displaying symptoms. Health care workers, public health workers, public safety workers, transportation workers, and designated essential workers are exempt from this requirement.
- Emergency Limited Medical Licenses: The Board of Registration in Medicine will provide medical school graduates who have matched as an intern, resident or fellow with a Board-approved Massachusetts health care facility or training program with Emergency 90-Day Limited Licenses to practice medicine to ensure that our health care workforce is prepared during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
To qualify, medical residents must fill out an application to be approved by the program or facility, and once approved, residents will receive the emergency license and be able to start when their program begins. This Emergency Limited License will allow medical staff to provide support while the regular screening progresses, and it is not a substitute for the regular Limited License process.
- Health Care Professional Volunteers: To support ongoing COVID-19 emergency response efforts, the Baker-Polito Administration has partnered with the Massachusetts Medical Society to match volunteers with our communities and health care providers based on skillsets and need. There is an immediate need for respiratory therapists and public health nurses, and the administration is asking health care professionals interested in volunteering to sign up at MAResponds.org.
- Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs) ORDER: The administration has issued a public health order to provide APRNs in good standing with greater flexibility in their prescribing practices. This order includes the following updates:
- Certified nurse-midwives will be allowed to continue to prescribe as already authorized.
- Authorizes APRNs who have at least two years of supervised practice experience to prescribe without physician supervision.
- Authorizes APRNs with fewer than two years of supervised practice experience to prescribe with physician supervision, but without the normally required written guidelines.
- EOHHS ADJUSTMENTS TO ESSENTIAL PROVIDER RATES: On March 30, Governor Baker issued an emergency order authorizing the Executive Office of Health and Human Services to adjust essential provider rates. ORDER
MAXIMIZING AVAILABLE HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS: On March 29, the Department of Public Health issued an emergency order expanding the availability of certain health care providers. ORDER
LTCF TRANSFERS AND DISCHARGES: On March 29, the Department of Public Health issued an emergency order regarding long-term care facility resident transfers and discharges. ORDER
MA RESPONDS CORI CHECKS: On March 29, the Department of Public Health issued an emergency order authorizing DPH’s Office of Preparedness and Emergency Management to conduct BORI checks on volunteers who register with MA Responds to respond to the COVID-19 emergency without a notarized CORI Acknowledgement Form. ORDER
SHAREHOLDER MEETINGS BY PUBLIC COMPANIES: ORDER
- MEDICAL SCHOOL GRADUATION: Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders and DPH Commissioner Dr. Monica Bharel have coordinated with Massachusetts medical schools to facilitate early graduation of their qualified fourth-year students to allow graduates to support the health care workforce during the COVID-19 response. This coordinated effort includes Boston University School of Medicine, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Tufts University School of Medicine and Harvard Medical School.
- MassHealth Waiver: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has approved, in part, the Baker-Polito Administration’s 1135 waiver to fast-track MassHealth enrollment, streamline administrative requirements for providers and better deliver critically needed health care services during the COVID-19 public health emergency. CMS has approved the following items of the waiver:
- Enrollment of out-of-state providers and easing other provider requirements when enrolling in MassHealth.
- Allowing providers to be reimbursed for care in the alternative, unlicensed settings.
- Suspension of prior authorization requirements and extending pre-existing prior authorizations through the emergency.
- SPECIAL SHOPPING TIMES FOR 60+ - All grocery stores and pharmacies must offer reserved shopping hours for those 60+
- REUSABLE GROCERY BAGS ARE TEMPORARILY PROHIBITED - The use of reusable bags will be banned, for the time being, plastic bag bans will be lifted, and stores will not be able to charge for paper bags.
- ALL GROCERY STORES AND PHARMACIES - required to offer sanitation options such as hand sanitizer and wipes for carts - Grocery store employees instructed to stay home if sick, employers required to accommodate high-risk employees with temporary reassignment
- CHECKOUT LINES - must have ’social distancing markers’ to keep shoppers 6 feet away from each other
- SELF-SERVE FOOD STATIONS MUST CLOSE
- COVID-19 Essential Services - Governor Baker issued an emergency order requiring all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers, customers, and the public as of Tuesday, March 24th at noon until specific Re-open Phase. These businesses are encouraged to continue operations remotely. ORDER | GUIDANCE | FULL LIST
- GATHERINGS & RESTAURANTS: Governor Baker issued an emergency order limiting gatherings to 10 individuals and prohibiting on-premises consumption of food or drink at bars and restaurants ORDER | GUIDANCE
- 03/24/2020 Update: Permitting establishments licensed to sell alcohol for on-premises consumption to sell wine and beer by take-out and delivery, provided that the wine or beer is sold in the original sealed container, is sold in the same transaction as a purchase of food and is not over certain volume limitations.
- SCHOOL OPERATIONS SUSPENDED: Governor Baker ordered the suspension of school operations for educational purposes at all public and private elementary and secondary (K-12) schools in the Commonwealth (not including residential and day schools for special needs students). ORDER
- All Chicopee Public Schools (CPS), including education and sports programs, will remain closed, in compliance with Governor Baker’s latest orders. All schools (except Szetela, Chicopee Academy, Belcher, Dupont, and Lambert-Lavoie), the police substation in Willimansett, the police substation in Chicopee Center, and 180 Broadway will be open for grab and go breakfast and lunch. For more information visit the Food Service tab or Chicopee Fresh on Facebook.
Please note that there is NO PUBLIC ACCESS to Municipal buildings. Only staff will be allowed to access the buildings to continue day-to-day operations. NOTICE
Families are encouraged to take advantage of the meal distribution centers, which are being held in 13 schools. Meal pick up is between the hours of 8:00 and 1:00 each day.
To-Go Meals will be provided to ALL children under age 22 during the extended school district closure. To learn more visit: Chicopee Fresh - If anyone 21 and under, goes to a distribution site they will not need to an ID proving residency. No questions asked. If you are going to pick up meals for children who are not going to be with you, please bring something to verify that they attend the schools such as their school ID, birth certificate, etc.
- ASSISTED LIVING VISITOR RESTRICTIONS. Department of Public Health issued visitor restrictions for assisted living facilities. ORDER | GUIDANCE
- RiverMills Senior Center has been closed until further notice
- Meals on Wheels is available for anyone who needs them by calling 413-538-9020. Western Mass Elder Care will provide this information to everyone they have listed.
- RMV RENEWAL TIMELINE: The Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) will extend the renewal timeline of certain credentials to reduce the need for customers to physically visit an RMV service center for in-person transactions. ORDER
- OPEN MEETING LAW MODIFICATIONS: Governor Baker issued an emergency order making modifications to the state’s Open Meeting Law to allow state, quasi and local governments to continue to carry out essential functions during the COVID-19 outbreak. ORDER
- City of Chicopee Events/Meetings cancelations, updates, and/or postponements - Follow for the most accurate updates: https://bit.ly/39R1MfD
- PUBLIC access to City Hall and all Municipal buildings is CLOSED. During the hours of 9:00 AM- 4:00 PM, only essential City Staff will be allowed to access the buildings to continue day-to-day operations - Individuals encountering urgent and time-sensitive situations should contact the Mayor’s Office at 413-594-1500 and we will do what we can to accommodate the situation.
- DPW - trash and recycling collections will continue as regularly scheduled. NOTICE
- Drop-off Center – Only non-payment items will be accepted (recyclables, yard waste, brush, etc.)
- Water Dept – No non-emergency services to residential homes (replacing meters, meter readings)
- Engineering – Permits will need to be processed online
- WasteWater – No non-emergency services to residential homes (backups will be dealt with from outside)
- Please DO NOT FLUSH disinfectant wipes or paper towels because they clog drains, back up sewers, and can cause overflows at sewage plants.
- Chicopee Public Library is CLOSED - all fines will be waived in correlation to the closure. There is staff on hand M-F 9A-5P to answer calls and help with U.S. Census needs. Booker is not in service during this time. Check the www.chicopeepubliclibrary.org for a wealth of online resources.
- Census Bureau is delaying some of its early outreach efforts because of the pandemic. Reminder: You can complete the census online or call the Chicopee Public Library and they will help get your U.S. Census completed over the phone!
- Winter Moratorium for collections and/or shut-off notices for water and electricity has been extended until June 1, 2020, or until the MA State of Emergency is lifted.
For up-to-date levels of reported cases in Massachusetts (updated daily at 4:00 p.m.), click the image below:
Do your part to help us keep our community healthy. Practice these smart health tips:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
For more guidance and information related to the COVID-19:
Coronavirus Fact Sheet
Massachusetts Department of Public Health
Confirmed Cases in the U.S.
BayState Health/ COVID-19
Department of Unemployment Assistance: Applying for Unemployment Benefits
Legislation Filing Package: https://www.mass.gov/doc/march-16-2020-unemployment-insurance-legislation-filing-package/download
Resources for small businesses impacted by COVID-19
U.S. ChamberCommerce Corona Virus Smallbiz Loan 2020
Small Business Assistance for COVID-19
> EIDL - Worksheet & Instructions download
Greater Chicopee Chamber of Commerce
Empowerment Grant for Small Businesses