Barnstable County Health Officials Encourage Out-of-State Visitors to Self-Quarantine

Patient being tested at the Cape Cod Healthcare drive-thru facility at Cape Cod Community College

HYANNIS – Barnstable County Health Officials continue to stress that people who are coming to Cape Cod from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut to self-quarantine themselves for 14 days upon arriving.

“Regarding the New York City Metropolitan area and folks that are from those areas need to self-quarantine for 14 days while they’re here,” said Director of the Barnstable County Department of Health and Environment Sean O’Brien.

“Non-residents are encouraged to consider returning to their full time address, which means going back down to that area but if folks aren’t able to do so then you need to quarantine yourself.”   

This comes as Governor Charlie Baker on Friday morning asked all visitors who come to the state self-quarantine for 14 days.

Baker said the New York is the epicenter of the pandemic.

Officials added that people who come from New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut need to strictly adhere to the quarantine and stay inside as much as possible.  

This quarantine applies to all people coming into Cape Cod regardless of whether they’re diagnosed with the virus or not.  

O’Brien noted that having extra people on Cape Cod during the pandemic could stress the infrastructure of the county.

Currently 14 towns on Cape Cod have had at least one positive case of COVID-19.

This comes as testing at the drive-thru facility at Cape Cod Community College continues to see strong numbers.

Since it’s opening, the facility has seen 774 cars come through, including 96 on Thursday.

The number of vehicles that come through the facility does not represent the exact number of patients who have been tested.

The drive-thru facility has also permanently extended its hours to 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and officials expect it to be open for a while moving forward.  

O’Brien said that while a few people have shown up at the facility without a doctor’s note, most people understand that a doctor’s note is needed to be tested.    

Due to federal regulations, health officials cannot release any other information on positive cases besides the numbers in the state and county.

County health officials are also continuing to monitor the status of personal protective equipment across Cape Cod.

They have also been coordinating with Mass Alternative Care and local fire departments and EMS services to find PPE.  

There have been a few businesses and residents who have donated PPE to health services on Barnstable County but there is still a need across the region.

There has also been small amounts of PPE that have come in from the state.

O’Brien said that as Cape Cod Healthcare gets more equipment, they have been good at making sure PPE is available to other health providers and that everyone in the county is going to have to work together to make the best out of the situation.

Officials are also reminding people that as the weather gets nicer it is okay for residents to get outside but that they must practice social distancing when doing so.

O’Brien added that he understands it is a lot for people to be continuously be inside.

According to the DPH, as of Friday afternoon, over 29,000 people have been tested in Massachusetts with 3240 positive results and 35 fatalities.  

A total of 100 positive cases have been identified in Barnstable County and 4 in Dukes and Nantucket Counties, according to Friday’s update from the state.

About Luke Leitner

Luke Leitner grew up in Watertown Massachusetts and now lives in West Yarmouth on the Cape. He has been a part of the news team in the CapeCod.com News Center since the spring of 2019. He studied business communications at Western New England University.



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