The state reported one new confirmed COVID-19 case in Harvard for the week ending March 16, bringing the town’s cumulative number of confirmed cases since the pandemic began to 116. During the week of March 15, no students or staff in the elementary school or Bromfield tested positive for COVID-19, although two students or staff were in quarantine because of close contact with someone with the virus.
According to the state’s weekly town-by-town vaccination report, 662 Harvard residents were fully vaccinated as of March 16, meaning they had either received two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. It is unclear if this number includes Devens residents. According to Town Clerk Marlene Kenney, Harvard’s population, including Devens residents, was 5,825 on March 2, based on voter registration numbers and the annual town census.
Statewide, COVID-19 cases were up for the second week in a row. During the week between March 16 and March 23, confirmed cases increased by 11,521, up from the previous week’s increase of 9,657. There were 223 COVID-19-related deaths during the week ending March 23, down from 232 the previous week.
On March 22 the number of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 in the state was 608, down from 619 a week earlier. The number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units also dropped over that week, from 164 to 148.
On March 23 the Bureau of Prisons website reported one active COVID-19 case among inmates at the Federal Medical Center in Devens, down from two last week. The number of active cases among staff dropped from nine to zero. The bureau also reported that 336 staff and 243 inmates had received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine as of March 23. Since the pandemic began, 384 of the current inmates have recovered, 63 staff have recovered, and 10 inmates have died.
Editor’s Note: The state is currently reporting percentages of people vaccinated by town, including age and race percentage breakdowns. The state uses federal census data for town and city populations, and, in the case of Harvard, that data includes the inmates at the Federal Medical Center in Devens. As a result, the state’s population number for the town of Harvard is about 1,100 too high, and its age and race numbers are off as well. The Boston Globe used the state’s numbers last week to report vaccination rates, including by race, for each town. Those numbers were incorrect for Harvard. In addition, since there is no way to tell if Devens residents or Devens FMC inmates are being included in the state’s vaccination numbers for Harvard, the Press cannot accurately calculate the percentage of vaccinated Harvard residents at this time.
—Compiled by Joan Eliyesil