The Latest: Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

Updated August 13, 2020

The Town of Amherst is responding to COVID-19 in Massachusetts. The Town has strong systems in place to address this situation. The Town is the local point of contact and source for information for residents and business of Amherst. We are in continuous contact with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH), local institutions of higher education, Cooley Dickinson Hospital, and Amherst Regional Public Schools (ARPS).

Amherst Board of Health Emergency Order: Face Masks/Coverings in Part of the Town

Mandatory Face Mask Map_News   

The Board of Health for the Town of Amherst has issued an emergency order making the wearing of face masks or face coverings in part of the Town, in order to protect public health and to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. For the full order please visit Amherst Face Mask/Covering Emergency Order

COVID-19 Travel Order 

As of August 1st, Massachusetts has enacted a new travel order that requires all visitors and returning residents to fill out a “Massachusetts Traveler Form” unless they are coming from a state that has been designated a lower risk COVID-19 state or fall into an exemption category. The new travel order also provides that visitors and returning residents arriving in Massachusetts from any place other than a COVID-19 lower-risk state MUST quarantine for 14-days unless they can produce a negative COVID-19 test result administered on a sample taken not more than 72-hours prior to arriving in Massachusetts.

  • Travel Form  Must be completed prior travel to Massachusetts
  • Exemptions Three exemptions to the order including current low risk states

You do not need to quarantine for 14 days if you took a test for COVID-19 and have received a negative result. The specimen for the test must have been collected no longer than 72 hours before your arrival in Massachusetts. Upon request, you must be able to demonstrate proof of the negative test result. 

If you took a test prior to your arrival but have not received your negative result, you MUST quarantine until you receive the negative result. You may obtain a test at your own expense after your arrival in Massachusetts, but you MUST quarantine until you obtain a negative result. Use the COVID-19 testing map to find a site near you. 

Testing for children, 10 years and younger, who are traveling with an adult from their household is not required.

COVID-19 Safe Practices Concern Form

Have a concern or complaint? Please complete the COVID Safe Practices Concern Form if you'd like to report possible concerns about non-compliance with the Commonwealth’s travel advisory quarantine, face covering, gathering, or other public health rules. Thank you for alerting us to your concern. 

August 13, 2020, 8:30 am. Current and Total Laboratory Confirmed COVID-19 Cases: 

  • Amherst Current Cases: 13
  • Amherst Running Total: 117*
  • Hampshire County Cases: 1,184 (as of 8/12/20 - today's value not available as of this posting)
  • Massachusetts: 121,707 (as of 8/12/20 - today's value not available as of this posting)

The Town of Amherst will report laboratory confirmed COVID-19 case counts Monday through Friday.  *A decrease in running total may be due to cases being reassigned to another town/city where residence is established. For more Massachusetts data visit MDPH COVID-19 Cases. This COVID-19 case count reflects laboratory confirmed cases reported by MDPH’s computerized surveillance and case management system called MAVEN (Massachusetts Virtual Epidemiological Network).

Reopening Massachusetts

The goal of the phased reopening is to methodically allow certain businesses, services, and activities to resume, while protecting public health and limiting a resurgence of new COVID-19 cases. For Information on:

Each phase will last a minimum of three weeks and could last longer before moving to the next phase. If public health data trends are negative, specific industries, regions, and/or the entire Commonwealth may need to return to an earlier phase.

Amherst Community Resource COVID-19 Webpage

Stay up to date with Town of Amherst municipal buildings status and Amherst Regional Public School (ARPS) status at the  Amherst Community Resource COVID-19 website. Upcoming events will be listed, as well as other resources and schedules. COVID-19 Community Website

Deciding to Go Out 

As communities and businesses are opening, you may be looking for ways to resume some daily activities as safely as possible. While there is no way to ensure zero risk of infection, it is important to understand potential risks and how to adopt different types of prevention measures to protect yourself and to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. As a reminder, if you have COVID-19, have symptoms consistent with COVID-19, or have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, it is important to stay home and away from other people. When you can leave home and be around others depends on different factors for different situations. Follow CDC’s recommendations for your circumstances.

In general, the more closely you interact with others and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. So, think about:

  • How many people will you interact with? 
    • Interacting with more people raises your risk.
    • Being in a group with people who aren’t social distancing or wearing cloth face coverings increases your risk.
    • Engaging with new people (e.g., those who don’t live with you) also raises your risk.
    • Some people have the virus and don’t have any symptoms, and it is not yet known how often people without symptoms can transmit the virus to others.
  • Can you keep 6 feet of space between you and others? Will you be outdoors or indoors? 
    • The closer you are to other people who may be infected, the greater your risk of getting sick.
    • Keeping distance from other people is especially important for people who are at higher risk for severe illness, such as older adults and those with underlying medical conditions.
    • Indoor spaces are more risky than outdoor spaces where it might be harder to keep people apart and there’s less ventilation.
  • What’s the length of time that you will be interacting with people? 
    • Spending more time with people who may be infected increases your risk of becoming infected.
    • Spending more time with people increases their risk of becoming infected if there is any chance that you may already be infected.

Do You Have Questions Regarding COVID-19? 

Mass 2-1-1 is staffed 24 hours per day with professional personnel who can answer questions regarding local testing sites, current travel restrictions. Personnel can speak with you in multiple languages. Dial 2 1 1 on your phone, or visit their webpage 211 

  • Please utilize the tabs below to access additional information.
  1. Our Team
  2. What You Should Do
  3. Resources
  4. Travelers
  5. FAQs
  6. CTC

Town Manager Paul Bockelman has overall responsibility and has assembled a team that is lead by Health Director Julie Federman, Fire Chief and Emergency Management Director Tim Nelson, Police Chief Scott Livingstone, and Assistant Town Manager David Ziomek. This team brings together the public health and public safety teams to coordinate all management and communication for the Town.

Stay Connected

This page will continue to be updated as new information becomes available.