Stay-At-Home Advisory

Mass DPH issues public health advisory

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has issued a Public Health Advisory to provide guidance regarding Stay-at-Home and Safe Practices. The purpose is to take strong action to reduce the potential exposure to COVID-19 to those instances for basic food, health and well-being and for the provision of our essential services. Everyone in Massachusetts has an important role to play to slow the transmission of this virus. Every instance of potential exposure that can be eliminated is an important step for that individual and for our community.

You can read the full text of the advisory on the website. See below for a summary.

Residents who are 70 years and older and those with underlying health conditions:

  • Stay-at-home, except essential trips for food, medicine, and focused time for exercise and fresh air.

The population as a whole:

Staying home means:

  • Only leave your home to address essential needs, get some fresh air and exercise, and if you do, avoid unnecessary contact with other individuals.
  • You should still run essential errands such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy but should practice social distancing when shopping. If you are at high-risk, you should inquire about your local pharmacy/grocery store’s alternative hours for high risk individuals.
  • When going to the pharmacy you should fill your prescriptions for 90 days if possible; for some medications this is not allowed. If you are at high-risk, you should try to use a mail-order service.
  • You can still go to the gas station, order and pick up take-out food and receive deliveries (e.g Amazon, UPS, Fedex).
  • You can still go outside to get fresh air, however, you must practice social distancing while outside and avoid touching surfaces frequently touched by others.
  • You are encouraged to use remote modes of communication such as telephone or video chat (e.g. Facetime, Skype, Facebook Messenger Video Chat) instead of visiting friends or family. This is especially true for a hospital, nursing home, skilled nursing facility, or other residential care setting..
  • Non-essential medical care like eye exams, teeth cleaning, and elective procedures must be rescheduled.
  • If possible, health care visits should be done remotely.
  • Parents should not arrange play dates for children during this time.
  • All individuals must eliminate close contact activities such as in pick-up sports games.

Individuals with any signs or symptoms of COVID-19 should remain in their homes, and request assistance with accessing essential services, such as obtaining food or medications.

Important note: If you or a family/household member does not feel safe at home, please call 1-800-799-7233 for live support. If you are unable to speak safely, you can log onto to chat online, or text LOVEIS to 22522.

If you or a family/household member have another concern or need regarding stay-at-home, please call the informationa and referral hotline at 211.

To get up-to-date alerts sent directly to your phone, text COVIDMA to 888-777.

Posted: to Board of Health on Thu, Mar 26, 2020
Updated: Sat, Jun 17, 2023

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