Dear Constituents of Massachusetts' First Congressional District,
My staff and I in Washington, Pittsfield, and Springfield are working with local, state, and federal agencies to bring you the most up-to-date and accurate information on the coronavirus or COVID-19. Please note that due to this pandemic, all three of my offices are closed. My staff is working remotely and can be reached by calling Washington (202-225-5601), Springfield (413-785-0325), or Pittsfield (413-442-0946). You may also send an email HERE.
The resources outlined below are designed to keep you informed, prepared, and safe.
The Baker-Polito Administration has outlined their "Reopening Massachusetts" plan which can be found HERE.
Richard E. Neal
Member of Congress
Coronavirus or COVID-19
How Coronavirus Spreads
- There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
- The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.
- The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person between people who are within six feet of each other and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
- These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
Take Steps to Protect Yourself
- Clean your hands often:
- With soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- With a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol ONLY IF soap and water are not available. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
**Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands**
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Distance yourself from other people if COVID-19 is spreading in your community. This is especially important for people who are at a higher risk of getting very sick
Take Steps to Protect Others
- Stay home if you’re sick unless you need to seek medical treatment
- Cover your mouth and nose when you cough and sneeze with a tissue, or use the inside of your elbow.
- Throw used tissues in the trash
- Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19
Cloth face coverings should—
- fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- be secured with ties or ear loops
- include multiple layers of fabric
- allow for breathing without restriction
- be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape
**More information on how to make them HERE**
Clean and Disinfect
- Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them with detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection
Buoy Health COVID-19 Web App
- MA residents who suspect they might have COVID-19 can now use this Buoy Health COVID-19 Web App, which will help to screen them based on a series of questions and connect them to a health care provider via telehealth.
Frequently Asked Questions on Legislation
Want to Help?
Individuals who would like to volunteer their assistance can sign up at https://www.maresponds.org/
Donate or sell personal protective equipment to support Massachusetts' COVID-19 response efforts HERE
MA Financial Resources for COVID-19 HERE
MA residents who suspect they might have COVID-19 can now use this Buoy Health COVID-19 Web App, which will help to screen them based on a series of questions and connect them to a health care provider via telehealth
The "Stop the Spread" initiative introduced by the Baker-Polito Administration allows for individuals to receive a free COVID test at various locations throughout the state. For more information on locations, times, and to make an appointment, visit their website HERE.