If You Traveled to Provincetown Recently, Get a COVID Test, Officials Say
If you’ve been vaccinated against COVID, chances are you haven’t thought about getting tested for the virus in a while. Since the vaccine was approved for use in the United States, high efficiency rate, the probability of breakouts is quite low – but not impossible. Recently, a cluster of COVID cases was tracked in a popular tourist destination, with the majority of those infected being fully vaccinated.
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On July 20, Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) released a statement saying at least 35 cases of COVID in Boston residents have been found in a cluster in Provincetown, the northern tip of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The statement noted that “the majority” of those infected were fully vaccinated.
NBC reports that as of July 16, there have been at least 132 confirmed cases of COVID associated with cluster throughout Massachusetts. Officials told NBC that the cases may be related to the July 4 celebration that took place at the popular summer destination.
The BPHC has recommended that Boston residents who have traveled to Provincetown since July 1 be tested for COVID at least five days after their return, regardless of whether or not they return. they have been vaccinated or show symptoms. The committee also recommends that these people self-isolate and avoid groups or gatherings for at least five days and until they receive a negative COVID test. People outside of Boston who visited Provincetown on July 1 or later should also heed this warning from the BPHC.
Local officials told the Associated Press that more than 90% of them infected from cluster is male, with an average age of 35. “I think this was last week and since July 4 was just a reminder to us that yes, COVID is here to stay,” said Barnstable County Health Director. Sean O’Brien told AP.
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Following the cluster of cases, officials created a mask advisor. According to NBC, during an emergency meeting on July 19, the Health Committee voted to advise people to wear masks while indoors even if they are vaccinated. Janet Whelan, MD, a member of the Provincial Health Council, feels that the board should have been more strict.
“I have to say I’m a bit disappointed that we didn’t take a stronger stance on this. Instead of just advising, we should have asked for masks,” Whelan told NBC. “The most exciting thing for me about this cluster of cases is that so many of the infected people have been vaccinated, which means that a lot of vaccinated people who are exposed to it may feel safe but also transmit disease to others.”
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