coronavirus

Mass. Confirms 5,545 More COVID Cases, 74 New Deaths

There have now been 13,156 confirmed deaths and 433,297 cases, according to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health

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Massachusetts reported 5,545 new confirmed coronavirus cases Thursday and an additional 74 deaths.

There have now been 13,156 confirmed deaths and 433,297 cases, according to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Another 277 deaths are considered probably linked to COVID-19.

The percentage of coronavirus tests coming back positive, on average, has decreased to 6.67%, the department said.

The number of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 has increased to 2,226. Of that number, 454 were listed as being in intensive care units and 294 are intubated, according to DPH.

On Wednesday, Gov. Charlie Baker announced that Massachusetts will start vaccinating individuals living and working in congregate care facilities and prisons beginning on Monday.

The facilities include residential congregate care programs, groups homes, residential treatment programs, community-based acute residential treatment programs and clinical stabilization programs.

Shelter programs — including homeless shelters, domestic violence shelters, veteran shelters — will also be included, as will approved private and special education schools.

"These facilities are prioritized because they serve vulnerable populations in densely populated settings which means they are at significant risk of contracting COVID-19," Baker said during his Wednesday news conference. "The staff is also at high risk of exposure at these facilities."

There are about 94,000 individuals who will be eligible to receive vaccines as part of the congregate care group.

State prisons will also start receiving vaccines next week. There are about 6,500 inmates in prisons.

NBC10 Boston and Associated Press
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