Cape and Islands COVID Cases on the Decline

An illustration of COVID-19 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

FALMOUTH – Health officials say the Cape Cod and Islands region is likely putting the peak of the latest surge of COVID-19 cases brought on by the Omicron variant behind it, but say they will continue to watch death rates.

The latest figures from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health report an average of 57 deaths over the last 7 days statewide. 

In Barnstable County, data showed 20 confirmed deaths over the 7-day period ending January 24.

Weekly-reported figures from January 18 show that the county’s 14-day average positivity rate rests at around 20 percent, still showing an outbreak status according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. 

Even with the surge in new cases, health officials including Falmouth Health Agent Scott McGann said that residents are still more protected now than at any earlier point in the pandemic, due to the efficacy of the vaccine and booster shots. 

“When we see 400 [cases] in Falmouth and see a five times increase, you’re not seeing hospitalizations going up five times. It’s actually staying below previous levels, and that’s one of the indicators that the hospitalizations and deaths is less at this point in the pandemic,” said McGann. 

He added that 90 percent of the eligible community has been vaccinated against the virus, though booster uptake has lagged somewhat in Falmouth, with only 45% of those eligible having received one.

Taking into account the data from the same time last year, McGann highlighted the positive progress that has been made as the pandemic has dragged on. 

On the testing front, the school test-and-stay program has been replaced by pooled testing and home testing, said McGann, which is more efficient given that schools do not have the infrastructure required to be mass testing sites.

McGann highlighted testing services across Cape Cod for residents to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, including the Stop the Spread free, state-run site at the Melody Tent on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 

The latest COVID guidance says that those who have tested positive for COVID should stay home for five days, then if no symptoms are present or are resolving after five days, individuals can leave their home. 

Even after leaving their home with no symptoms, individuals are urged to continue to wear a mask around others for five additional days. 

Vaccine and booster shot appointments can be made online at

About Grady Culhane

Grady Culhane is a Cape Cod native from Eastham. He studied media communications at Cape Cod Community College and joined the News Center in 2019.
737 West Main Street
Hyannis, MA 02601
Contact Us | Advertise Terms of Use 
Employment and EEO | Privacy