From the Office of the Greater Boroughs Partnership for Health:
Amidst the respiratory illness season, we have provided state-wide data indicating a decline in respiratory disease trends.
During the previous week (1/14/24-1/20/24), 13.8% of all emergency department visits in Massachusetts were due to acute respiratory diseases. In the graph presented below, the percentage shows acute respiratory disease, which includes COVID-19, influenza, and RSV, are trending downward. Acute respiratory diseases appeared to have peaked in Massachusetts during the week of 12/25/23 – 12/31/23.
This decline in late December, early January, is similar to the past few respiratory seasons, as displayed in the graph below. All data is from the Bureau of Infectious Disease and Laboratory Sciences, Syndromic Surveillance program. To view all of the state data, visit www.mass.gov/info-details/respiratory-illness-reporting.
Free COVID-19 tests are still available through USPS. Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order an additional 4 free at-home tests. If you did not order tests this fall, you may place two orders for a total of 8 tests. Visit www.covid.gov to order your home tests. Before throwing out "expired" tests kits, check the FDA's website to see if your COVID-19 tests' expiration dates have been extended.
Currently, COVID-19 isolation remains 5 days, when you are most infectious, and then the state recommends wearing a mask around others for an additional 5 days. Masks can be removed prior to day 10, if you have had 2 negative tests taken 48 hours apart. For a refresher on current COVID isolation guidance, visit www.mass.gov/isol8.