Health officials: Town residents contract COVID-19 in Hadley, South Hadley 

  • Hadley Town Hall  GAZETTE FILE PHOTO

Published: 3/25/2020 11:12:15 AM

Hadley and South Hadley officials on Wednesday announced the first confirmed cases of residents contracting COVID-19 in their towns. 

Hadley’s Board of Health reported that one resident has contracted COVID-19.

In a message posted to the town website, the health board states that it is awaiting additional confirmation from the state’s Department of Public Health.

“Those who have been in close contact with the resident have been identified and have been contacted properly in accordance with professional practice,” the update states.

The message states that delays with obtaining accurate information from the state public health department and federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are limiting the ability for health officials to take effective and timely action at the local level. 

The delays have prompted the health board to call on people who are staying home and awaiting test results, are self-isolating because of active symptoms or have other COVID-19 information to call the Board of Health’s COVID-19 directly at 413-727-6067.

Also in Hadley, Steve Lewis Subaru reported on its Facebook page that a part-time employee tested positive for COVID-19, forcing the business to shut down its operations for three days for a full disinfecting and cleaning of its building, with a limited reopening planned for Friday, and the salesroom to reopen April 7.

In addition, the dealership has directed all employees that have had close contact with the employee or are exhibiting any coronavirus symptoms to seek medical care and self-quarantine for 14 days. All customers who visited the Route 9 site on March 9, 11, 16 and 18 are also being advised.

In South Hadley, health officials stated that an individual, the first documented case of the illness in town, is in self-isolation, and close contacts have been identified and placed in self-quarantine.

“With the first documented case in our community, it brings home the need for every citizen in the community to be vigilant with social distancing and hand washing,” health officials said in the announcement.

Town officials are also urging residents to stay home and take extra caution if they are experiencing even mild symptoms of illness.

“It will take each community member, working together, to bring this pandemic under control,” they said.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the state DPH confirmed 11 cases of COVID-19 in Hampshire County and 1,838 cases statewide. The state agency reports that 15 people have died from the virus in Massachusetts as of Wednesday.  

Scott Merzbach can be reached at smerzbach@gazettenet.com. Jacquelyn Voghel can be reached at jvoghel@gazettenet.com.


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