Chronological Narrative of COVID-19

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July 27: Seven deaths were reported on Monday and the number of hospitals using surge capacity dropped to zero after rising to seven just four days ago. The seven-day positive test rate stayed at 1.9 percent and the governor expanded testing to eight communities where an increase in COVID-19 has been identified, including Springfield and Agawam. BayState Health reported a hotspot of 36 cases after an employee returned from a hotspot and didn't properly mask. 
July 26: 19 deaths were reported. The seven-day average in positive tests continues to tick up with 273 new cases. The test rate is now 1.9 percent, where it was at the beginning of the month.
July 25: There were 12 deaths reported. New cases was again more than 200 and the seven-day average has ticked up to 1.8 percent.
July 24: There were 14 deaths reported and more than 200 new cases. The Berkshires' count jumped by seven to 636 after weeks of increasing by ones or twos. The six health criteria have not changed and continue to be "positive trend" or in progress to a positive trend. The islands have the  lowest rates per 100,000, followed by Berkshire, Barnstable and Franklin and Hampshire counties.
July 23: The number of was reported at 16 but  the state saw an uptick in positive cases at 270. The number of COVID-19 overall passed 4 million nationwide.
July 22: The number of cases in Berkshire County continue to tick up in ones and twos, with a count of 626 to date. However, there has not been a death in the county since July 3. The state reported 18 deaths statewide.
July 21: The rate of reported deaths continues on the decline with 17 on Tuesday. The three-day average is down 94 percent since April. New cases reported were 165, in line with the last couple of weeks of  fewer than 200. The seven-day average test rate remains at 1.7 percent; Berkshire County has the lowest rates per 100,000 population. BMC has one patient, who is not in ICU.
July 20: The state reported one death. 
July 19: The state reported 12 deaths.
July 18: 17 new deaths were reported today; the number hospitals using surge capacity has been five or six over the past few days, up from 2 around the July 4 holiday.
July 17: The state passed the 1 million mark in residents tested for COVID-19; 21 deaths were reported. The three-day average of hospitalizations has continued to drop and the seven-day average test rate has remained at 1.7 percent. 
July 16: The state reported 11 deaths today.
July 15: 27 deaths were reported today; the Berkshires remains unchanged for the third consecutive day with 615 cases and the 13th consecutive day with no deaths. The tally of Berkshire deaths remains at 45.
July 14: 10 deaths were reported today. 
July 13: The state reported only five deaths today and 154 new cases. 
July 12: There were 15 new deaths and 172 confirmed cases. The number hospitals using surge capacity had dropped to two and the three-day average of hospitalizations is 596. There are no patients at BMC and no patients awaiting tests.
July 11: The state reported 14 new deaths.
July 10: The state reported 28 new deaths. The positive test rate continues at a downward trend, at 1.6 percent on Saturday, but the number of hospitals using surge capacity has been four or five since July 5.
July 9: The state reported 25 new deaths.
July 8: The nation passed the 3 million mark for confirmed COVID-19 cases but Massachusetts' numbers continue to decline. There are 30 deaths and only 162 new cases reported. However, the number of hospitals using surge capacity has risen from 1 on July 5 to five. Overall, the three-day average of patients hospitalized has dropped to 82 percent.
July 7: The state reported 15 new deaths. The six measures dictating the reopening have not changed since June 5; the positive test rate, hospitalizations, and testing capacity have a positive trend status and deaths, health-care system readiness and contract tracing are "in progress." 
July 6: DPH separated out probable cases/deaths from the data. No was reason given but it dropped the death count by 215 and the positive cases by more than 5,000. There were 15 new confirmed deaths from COVID-19 for a total of 7,983 (200 less than Sunday.) Phase 3 of the reopening began today.

July 5: The state reported 11 new deaths.
July 4: The state reported 23 new deaths on Saturday.
July 2 & 3: Berkshire County recorded its first death on July 3 since June 19, bringing the total number to 45. The number of confirmed cases continues to slowly tick, surpassing 600. The number of deaths statewide is 8,149 with 68 new deaths recorded over the past two days.
July 1: 28 new deaths were reported.
June 30: For the first time since March 20, zero new deaths have been reported by the state. The total number of confirmed and probable COVID-19 deaths has also been reduced to 8,054 from 8,095 from cleaning up data to eliminate duplicate reports. 
June 29: The state reported 35 deaths and 101 new cases.
June 28: The number of deaths reported is again low, at 19; Berkshire County has not had a death related to COVID-19 since June 19. The count for the county remains at 44.
June 27: The number of deaths reported for Saturday is 28.
June 26: The number of deaths related to COVID-19 in the state passed 8,000 on Friday, with a total of 8,013. More than 809,000 individuals have been tested and the cumulative number of positive cases is 108,070. Berkshire County recorded the first confirmed case in several days, bringing the total since March to 592.
June 25: The state is reporting 25 deaths today; more than 800,000 individuals have been tested. Berkshire County numbers in cases and deaths remain the same. 
June 24: The state reported 48 deaths; the number of cases in Berkshire County has not changed in three days and the number of deaths has remained at 44.
June 23: The state reported 16 deaths on Tuesday. 
June 22: The state reported 46 deaths over Sunday and Monday, with 17 reported on Monday, June 22. 
June 20: The state reported 28 new deaths today. 
June 19: Two more deaths have been reported in Berkshire County for a total of 44; deaths statewide are now at 7,800 with 30 more reported today. However, the trend in cases and hospitalizations continues to decline and the state is set for limited indoor dining and personal services to begin on June 22.
June 18: The state reported 36 new deaths; the number of cases in the county continues to creep up to 584.
June 16 & 17: New deaths totaled 87 over two days. Berkshire County's number of cases has fluctuated, first dropping by a couple and then rising to 582 on June 17. The number of deaths has remained the same. 
June 15: The state reported 23 deaths and showed continued declines in new cases and hospitalizations. Berkshire County's case number was reduced to 579 after two days at 580. No reason was given.
June 14: Forty-eight new deaths were reported for a total of 7,264. Berkshire County's cases remain at 580 and 42 deaths. More than 700,000 people have now been tested with 105,603 as confirmed positive.
June 13: The state reported 38 new deaths and three-day hospital average has now dropped 78 percent.
June 12: The state reported 46 new deaths including one in Berkshire County, the second in five days. The county had not recorded a COVID-19 death for nearly two weeks.
June 11: The state reported 38 deaths; no dashboard numbers were available June 10, but the number of deaths was 46.
June 9: Only 27 deaths were reported today.
June 8: Of the 38 new deaths reported on Monday, one was from Berkshire County. To date, 41 people in the county have died from COVID-19. The total number of deaths statewide is at 7,353; the state reported 27 deaths on June 7. 
June 6: The state reported 55 new deaths and upgraded "COVID-19 patients in hospitals" to a positive trend. Of the reopening indicators three — including positive test rate and testing capacity — are now green, or positive trend. Deaths, health-care system readiness and contract tracing remain "in progress."
June 5: The total number of cases COVID-19 in Berkshire County continues to creep up by twos and threes but the number of deaths has remained at 40. New deaths reported statewide is 35, the lowest number since the beginning of April. 
June 4: 50 deaths were reported, continuing a downward trend that began two weeks ago. The number of total cases in Berkshire County is 568 again, indicating yesterday's reduction may have been a typo.
June 3: The state reported 68 new deaths; the three-day average is now down 66 percent and the three-day average of COVID-19 in patients is down 53 percent. DPH reduced the number of cases in Berkshire County by two but did not give a reason.
June 2: The state reported 50 new deaths.
June 1: New deaths on May 31 were 78; beginning June 1, DPH is also counting probable COVID-19 deaths. Those were 141 on June 1 and 48 confirmed COVID-19 deaths. The number of deaths in Berkshire County remains at 40. 
May 30: The state reported 50 new deaths.
May 29: The state reported 78 new deaths.
May 28: The state reported 93 new deaths.
May 27: Another Berkshire County death has been recorded, bringing the total to 40 and 72 new deaths statewide, bringing that total to 6,547. 
May 26: The state again reported a low number of deaths, 57, but again this may delays in reporting because of the Memorial Day holiday.. However, the Berkshires reported only its second death since May 6, bringing the county's total to 39. 
May 25: The state reported 44 new deaths on Monday; this may be an aberration because of the holiday.
May 24: The state reported 68 new deaths on Sunday.
May 23: The number of reported deaths and hospitalizations continues to trend down. The state reports 72 new deaths and 610 patients in ICUs across the state compared to more than 1,000 three weeks ago.
May 22: Berkshire County has reported its first death from COVID-19 since May 6, bringing the total since March to 38. The number of cases has continued to tick up a few at a time and now stands at 510. The trend continues to decline statewide with deaths reported Friday at 80 and new cases at 805. There has been a 68 percent decline in average daily cases over the past week and 50 percent decline in the three-day average of reported deaths.
May 21: The number of deaths reported on Thursday is 82.
May 20: The number of COVID-19 cases in Berkshire County hit 500. Deaths remain at 37 but the number of statewide deaths has passed 6,000 with 128 new deaths reported.
May 19: The state reported 76 deaths on Monday, the third day the number of deaths has dropped below 100. There still may be a lag in reporting but the three-day average has now dropped 48 percent.
May 18: Newly reported deaths on Monday were 62, the second consecutive day below 100. The three-day average has declined by 38 percent, although officials caution about lags in reporting.
May 17: The state reported 92 deaths on Sunday.
May 16: The state recorded 113 new deaths; the number of Berkshire cases has been rising slightly over the past week and now stands at 495 but deaths remain at 37 and has not changed since May 6.
May 15: 110 new deaths were reported for a total of 5,592; hospitalizations continue to trend at 3 percent.
May 14: There were 167 new deaths reported; the number of COVID-19 deaths in Berkshire County remains at 37. The percentage of hospitalizations has dropped to 3 percent with 781 patients in intensive care statewide.
May 13: The state reported 174 new deaths. There apparently was a lag in results over the past couple days which resulted in an unusually low number on Tuesday, although the average is still lower than recent figures. 
May 12: the state reported 33 new deaths, the lowest number since March.
May 11: 129 deaths were reported for a total of 5,108 to date.
May 10: 139 new deaths were reported statewide.
May 9: 138 new deaths reported; the Berkshire County toll remains at 37.
May 8: The number of deaths continue to climb with 150 news deaths reported. However, hospitalizations are declining, dropping to 4 percent of cases as of Friday.
May 7: The state has reported 132 new deaths for a total of 4,552.
May 6: Some 208 deaths were reported statewide including one in Berkshire County. 
May 5: The state reported 122 deaths.
May 4: The state reported a low of 86 deaths, however there tends to be a lag in reporting coming off the weekend. Deaths in Berkshire County remain at 36.
May 3: The state reported 158 new deaths on Sunday, raising the total number of deaths above 4,000.
May 2: The state reported 130 new deaths on Saturday and 1,953 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
May 1: One more death has been reported in Berkshire County for a total of 36 since the pandemic began. The state reported 154 deaths on Friday and 947 COVID-19 patients in ICUs. 
April 30: Another death has been reported in Berkshire County for a total of 35 to date; 152 new deaths have been reported statewide.
April 29: Deaths from COVID-19 took a jump on Wednesday with 252 — the highest number so far — being reported. Total deaths are now 3,405 including three in Berkshire County. These are the first deaths in the Berkshires in a week. 
April 28: The state reported 150 new deaths on Tuesday for a total of 3,153. This is lower than last week's average and, with the weekend taken into account, may signal the state is on the other side of the curve. 
April 27: The number of deaths and total cases in Berkshire County has not changed since last week; 104 deaths were reported statewide. This is a significant dip but may  not accurately reflect actual deaths over the weekend.
April 26: The state has reported 169 new deaths; Berkshire County has remained the same for several days at 31.
April 25: The state has reported 174 new deaths statewide for a total of 2,730.
April 24: The state reported 192 new deaths on Friday; the data was delayed until later Friday night and not posted on iBerkshires until the next morning.
April 23: The state reported 178 new deaths on Thursday; 1,032 patients are being treated in ICUs across the state.
April 22: Two more Berkshire County residents were among the 221 new deaths reported on Wednesday. This was the highest number of deaths reported statewide to date. 
April 21: The state reported 152 new deaths on Tuesday.
April 20: The state reported 103 new deaths for a total of 1,809 statewide. Total numbers of new cases has dropped over the last four reporting cycles and deaths also appear down, however, this is Monday and there has been a reporting lag over weekends so these numbers may not hold. 
April 19: Two Berkshire women in their 60s and 80s have died; 146 total deaths were reported statewide.
April 18: A Berkshire County man in his 90s was among 156 new deaths reported on Saturday.
April 17: The state is reporting 159 new deaths, including four centenarians and six people in their 50s, showing the range of people being affected. 
April 16: Three Berkshire women in their 60s, 80s and 90s have died. Statewide deaths reported over 24 hours is 137. 
April 15: The state is reporting 151 new deaths, the highest single day number to date, for a total  of 1,108 deaths from complications of COVID-19.
April 14: A Berkshire County woman in her 90s has died and 113 deaths have been reported statewide. Hospitalizations are no longer being reported as a single number; find total capacity here.
April 13: Eighty-eight new deaths reported, none in Berkshire County. The day's total was based on deaths reported by 10 a.m., a change fro 12:30 p.m. over the past two months. The new reporting time will be the preceding 24 hours from 10 a.m. each day.
April 12: Seventy new deaths reported, none in Berkshire County. 
April 11: Eighty-seven new deaths were reported, none in Berkshire County.
April 10: Ninety-six more people have died including a Berkshire County woman in her 90s.
April 9: A Berkshire County man in his 90s has died along with 69 other state residents for a total of 503 deaths to date.
April 8: Two Berkshire County women, one in her 80s and one in her 90s, have died. New deaths reported statewide is 77 for a total of 433.
April 7: The number of deaths from COVID-19 jumped by 96 on Tuesday, including five more Berkshire residents. These include deaths from over the weekend and the last 24 hours that have been matched to tests and reported out. Berkshire deaths were of three men in their 50s, 70s, 80s, and two women in their 90s and 100s. 
April 6: Twenty-nine more deaths have been reported of residents ranging in age from their 50s to their 90s.
April 5: Three more Berkshire County residents have died: three women in their 60s, 90s, and 100s. Total of number of deaths reported statewide on Sunday is 15.
April 4: A Berkshire County woman and a man, both in their 90s, and a man in his 80s have died; total deaths statewide rose by 24 to 253.
April 3: There were 38 more deaths reported on Friday, none in Berkshire County. However, Williamstown Commons has reported two deaths on Wednesday so it is not clear if they were COVID-19 related.
April 2: Thirty-two more deaths have been reported for a total of 154 to date. The majority were hospitalized, including a Suffolk woman in her 30s.
April 1: The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state jumped by 1,118; 33 new deaths were recorded for a total of 122 since the pandemic spread to Massachusetts.While most of the deaths have been of residents ranging in age from their 60s to 100s, a man in his 30s has died in Suffolk County. The majority have also died in the hospital. Williamstown Commons reports that the number cases has remained at 20.  
March 31: A Berkshire County woman in her 80s has died. The state reports 33 new deaths for a total of 80. These numbers presumably contain the six COVID-19 deaths confirmed at the Soldiers' Home in Holyoke that were not previously reported; another five deaths there are being investigated as COVID-19.
Pittsfield is reporting a total of 61 active cases; a Pittsfield death was reported March 23.
March 30: Eight new deaths reported: Man in his 60s and woman in her 70s, Middlesex; woman, 80s, and man, 60s, Essex; woman, 70s, Norfolk; two women, 70s and 60s, Suffolk; and woman, 70s, Bristol. 
March 29: DPH reports four more deaths, including a Berkshire County woman in her 80s who had not been hospitalized. Also a man in his 80s from Essex County; woman, 90s, Middlesex; and woman, 70s, Norfolk.

March 28: Nine more people have died: woman in her 60s in Essex County; woman, 80s, Suffolk; man, 80s, and woman, 50s, Worcester; woman and man, both 80s, Norfolk; two men, 70s and 80s, and woman, 90s, Hampden.

March 27: Two more Berkshire County residents have died from complications of COVID-19: a man in his 60s and a woman in her 90s. Both had been hospitalized. Eight other state residents have also died: three women in their 80s and a man in his 60s from Norfolk County; woman, 90s, Franklin; man, 80s, Middlesex; man, 90s, Barnstable, and a woman, 90s, Bristol. 

March 26: 10 deaths total. Two men (50s & 80s) from Essex; two men (70s & 80s) and a woman (80s) from Middlesex; man, 80s, Hampden; man, 90s, Suffolk; man, 80s, Worcester; woman, 70s, Norfolk; man, 80s, Franklin. All but three confirmed hospitalized. 

March 25: A man and a woman in their 70s from Worcester County and two men in their 80s from Norfolk and Barnstable counties. All four had been hospitalized.

March 24: A Berkshire County woman in her 60s and a woman in her 80s from Middlesex County have died. 

March 23: Two women, both in their 70s and from Essex and Worcester counties, and two men — one in his 60s from Suffolk County and the other in his 80s from Norfolk County — have died. All four had been hospitalized.

March 22: A Berkshire County man has reportedly died from COVID-19, according to a statement by the DPH.

The first deaths resulting from COVID-19 in the state occurred on March 20  (a man in his 80s from Suffolk County) and on March 21 (a woman in her 50s from Middlesex County).


Cancellations, Closures & Changes 😷
Please assume that your local governmental offices, libraries and COAs are closed or operating under limited conditions. Use your town's official website for business or call to find out what precautions have been put in place. Always call ahead to ensure your destination is open.
• The Pittsfield RMV is appointment only for only critical services that cannot be done online or over the phone. Check the website for licenses and certificates that have been extended.
• All restaurants and bars are closed to on-premise consumption; please consider ordering takeout from them or buying gift cards to help them through this difficult period. 
• All schools are closed at least through May 4. All gatherings of more than 10 are prohibited; expect that all meetings, performances, clubs, fundraisers, worship services and other such activities are canceled. 
• All state programs are canceled and non-essential executive branch employees have been ordered to stay home. Museums and other cultural institutions are closed as are movie theaters and YMCAs.  
• Banks are currently open for driveup, online banking, ATMs or the drive-up. 
• Groceries, pharmacies, department and convenience stores are still open. PLEASE, PLEASE DO NOT BUY MORE THAN YOU NEED. Rules in effect include maintaining a 6-foot distance, shopping hours for vulnerable populations, and access to disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer.
• Child-care centers open only for essential personnel. Visitation at nursing homes and medical facilities are limited to prevent virus spread. 
• Other services and organizations are mainly open for phone consultation and limited person-to-person contact. 
What you can do 
Take a walk or a bicycle ride. Spring clean. Call friends or Facetime. Get your garden ready. Check on folks who may need help. Watch a movie. Order from your favorite restaurants. Take a deep breath. Wash your hands.




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Berkshire HorseWorks Gets Grant to Support COVID-19 Responders

RICHMOND, Mass. — Berkshire HorseWorks Inc. has received $10,000 from the COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund for Berkshire County to support the "Healers and Horses" Program.
The program was created specifically to help local health-care workers on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic acclimate and reintegrate during and after their experiences dealing with the virus. The program's goal is to provide a safe platform where participants can identify, explore and process their feelings in a mutually supportive environment among other health-care workers and family. 
Exercises will address trauma, offer outlets for expression and develop positive coping skills healthcare workers can use while still in the midst of the crisis. Berkshire HorseWorks uses the Eagala Model of equine-assisted psychotherapy, which will be used in the "Healers and Horses" program. It integrates horses in ground-based, metaphorical activities and is facilitated by a licensed mental health professional and equine specialist. 
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