Town of North Andover COVID-19 Update, December 22, 2020: Holiday Guidance from NA Health Department, Emotional Health Resources

Town of North Andover Updates on COVID-19 response

CONNECT WITH US: Text COVIDNA to 67283

December 22, 2020 UPDATE

Total case count: 1532

Active: 222

Recovered and out of isolation: 1254 

COVID-19 Related Deaths: 56

Active Merrimack cases (included in case count): 1 

Dear Neighbors,

The Town of North Andover remains a higher risk/red community this week according to the COVID 19 community data map released by the State.  

As families all over the Commonwealth are beginning to engage in family-oriented holiday festivities, we ask you to do so in a manner that will keep interactions and any family gatherings to a minimum this holiday season.  We have seen a dramatic increase in overall cases and family clusters over the past month and we want to do our part to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 throughout our community and to protect our families.  Please protect your family, friends and loved ones this holiday season, and take a look at some holiday suggestions from the North Andover Health Department.

Many of us are struggling with anxiety and depression due to the isolation of Covid-19, and that can be particularly difficult during the holiday season.  You can find resources to help here: https://www.mass.gov/resource/maintaining-emotional-health-well-being-during-the-covid-19-outbreak

For the safety of our employees and residents, non-essential town employees will be working remotely until January 4.  The library, town hall, and senior center will all be closed to the public during this time. The  library and youth center will be running limited programming.  Employees are available by phone and email to serve residents.  For information on individual department’s hours, please contact that office directly.   The COVID-19 hotline is still available at 978-208-6070 and covid19@northandoverma.gov.  

The CDC and Massachusetts Department of Public Health issued updated quarantine recommendations.  That new information can be found here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-isolation-and-quarantine-information

The Police Department through its Cram-a-Cruiser drive event and Town Hall employees through their From Our Hearts to Your Homes drive have collected food and other personal items to distribute to residents in need.  

ALL residents are eligible and can pick-up food and/or supplies at the Senior Center.  Hours of operation and contact information are below:

North Andover Senior Center

120R Main Street (behind Town Hall)

Mondays & Wednesdays from 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

(978) 688-9560

If you travel you will need to quarantine when you return to Massachusetts.  If you return from travel and need a COVID-19 test, more information about the Stop the Spread sites is available here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/stop-the-spread

You can find updated information regarding the Governor’s travel order here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order

All of Governor Baker’s emergency orders can be found here: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-state-of-emergency

Technical Assistance for Small Businesses:  Through its partnership with the Lawrence Partnership, Essex County Community Foundation, the City of Lawrence, and the Town of Andover, the Town of North Andover is able to offer FREE opportunities for technical assistance (TA) to small businesses seeking help with how to operate during these challenging times.  There are a few TA service providers for businesses to select, some of which focus on specific types of businesses, like restaurants or salons/personal services businesses.  To learn more, visit: www.mvopenforbusiness.org

For more information on additional resources for small businesses and employers, Click Here.

As more and more businesses, restaurants and activities remain open, we continue to encourage the community to stay diligent in preventing the spread of COVID-19.  Many of the things that you can do to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses such as the flu, include:

  • Wear a face covering or mask whenever in public. 

  • Physical or social distancing whenever in public and as much as possible.

  • Avoid large gatherings especially as it gets colder and more events are being held inside.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

  • Clean things that are frequently touched (like doorknobs and countertops) with household cleaning spray or wipes.

  • Cover your mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use a tissue or your inner elbow, not your hands.

  • Stay home if you are sick and avoid close contact with others.

Please join us in stressing this to your family, friends and neighbors.  

If you get a COVID-19 test for any reason, especially if you are not feeling well then please isolate until you receive your test results.  It is also important to isolate yourself from your family members if possible.  The majority of the transmission we are seeing is from household contacts.  Please be aware and protect your family.  These steps are of the utmost importance and reduce the transmission of COVID-19. Due to the volume of positive cases across the State of Massachusetts, the Community Tracing Collaborative (CTC) was developed to aid Local Boards of Health in the tracing of close contacts in each community. By answering the call from the CTC, you can do your part in helping to stop the spread of COVID-19.  Your caller ID will show the call is coming from 
MA COVID Team with area codes (833) or (857).

We understand that you may need to go to potentially crowded public places and stores so please follow our Tips to Shop Safely during COVID-19, found here.

The COVID-19 hotline is still available at 978-208-6070.  Messages left on this line are sent directly to Town staff and will be answered during regular business hours.  

The best source of guidance and recommendations is the DPH website:

www.mass.gov/2019coronavirus.

Questions about the town’s response or about the illness, in general, can be sent to covid19@northandoverma.gov.

We will continue to monitor this situation and will distribute necessary information and guidance.  

Best,


Melissa Rodrigues, Esq.

Town Manager

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Protect your loved ones and celebrate safely by following these holiday suggestions from the North Andover Health Department!

Please Keep Your Loved Ones Safe Over the Holidays

As families all over the Commonwealth are beginning to engage in family-oriented holiday festivities, we implore you to do so in a manner to keep interactions and any intermingling to a minimum this holiday season. Immediately after Thanksgiving the state saw a large spike in positive cases and as a collective, we want to do our part to mitigate the spread and incidence of COVID-19 throughout our communities.

Please do everything you can to protect your family, friends and loved ones this holiday season! The best gift you can give is health and safety this year. This virus is spread very efficiently among small indoor gatherings and we are seeing an unprecedented number of family illnesses. One of the biggest concerns regarding holiday family gatherings is that some people who have the virus do not have any symptoms at all but can still spread the virus to other family members. This virus can be a runny nose for a child or young adult but be severe to a grandparent or other family member. Listed below are some general guidelines that are proven to help decrease the spread of the highly contagious COVID-19 virus.

This holiday season please keep in mind to:

  • ●  Limit in-person holiday gatherings only to people you live with.

  • ●  When preparing food for family and neighbors, deliver them in a no-contact way.

  • ●  Consider hosting or attending virtual holiday activities.

  • ●  If the weather permits such, increase general ventilation by keeping windows and doors open. A great excuse to have an ugly holiday sweater competition.

●  Avoid gatherings with elderly or those with various pre-existing health conditions.

Hosting gatherings with non-household members is not recommended in the current state of the pandemic however, in the event that any gatherings take place please keep in mind to:

  • ●  Limit indoor gatherings to 10 people, and outdoor gatherings to 25 people.

  • ●  Wear a mask if you are with non-household members.

  • ●  If you are traveling out of state please comply with the required travel order at: mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order

  • ●  Have a single person wearing a mask serve all food to avoid creating common touch points.

  • ●  Wash your hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizer.

  • ●  Do not share food, drink, or any utensils, including serving utensils.

  • ●  Monitor yourself for fever or any symptoms 10 days before and after any gatherings.

    Most importantly if you are feeling sick, have been in close contact with a positive COVID-19 case, or are awaiting COVID-19 test results please stay home. For any question please contact the North Andover Health Department. 


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