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Health Department Announces Over 200 COVID-19 Cases in Skilled Nursing and Assisted Living Facilities in Cambridge

caution sign The information on this page may be outdated as it was published 4 years ago.

4/13/20 - 9:45 p.m. - Public Health Update Regarding Case Counts: 


Due to a calculation error, the Cambridge case counts reported for April 12 reflected an over count. The Cambridge Public Health Department has since reconciled the discrepancy in positive case counts among Cambridge residents (in non-institutional settings) and newly reported cases in skilled nursing and assisted living facilities.


The correct case count data, as of April 13 at 6:30 p.m., is:

  • 256 Cambridge residents who live in a non-institutional setting (i.e., care facility) have tested positive for COVID-19, including one person who died from the disease.
  • 203 people who live or work in Cambridge skilled nursing and assisted living facilities have tested positive for COVID-19, including six individuals who have died from COVID-19. 

4/13/20 - 8:30 a.m. - The Cambridge Public Health Department (CPHD) announced today that a total of 212 people who live and work at skilled nursing and assisted living facilities in Cambridge have tested positive for COVID-19.

The test results were reported over the weekend by the Broad Institute, which launched a pilot program on April 9 with the City of Cambridge and Pro EMS ambulance service to test all residents, health care workers, and staff at the seven skilled nursing facilities and assisted living facilities in Cambridge. All facility residents and workers are being tested twice, with the initial and final tests being conducted three days apart.

The Cambridge Public Health Department (CPHD) does not currently have data on the number of residents versus workers who have tested positive nor how many of the positive cases are Cambridge residents. CPHD expects to have and report on this information in the near future.

In addition to the cases reported today at the long-term care facilities, another 256 Cambridge residents tested positive for COVID-19 between early March and April 12.

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has been alerted about the test results. The Cambridge Public Health Department is working with the facilities to provide guidance on “cohorting” patients, which means putting those who have tested positive together and those who have tested negative together and apart from the positive cases. CPHD is also providing strategies for crisis staffing as guided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Testing all people in the assisted living and skilled nursing facility population—regardless of whether they have COVID-19 symptoms or feel ill—is the best way to assess the true prevalence of COVID-19 among people who live and work in these facilities in Cambridge.

“The goal of rapid identification of positive cases is to break the chain of transmission in these facilities and ultimately reduce the number of people who become infected,” said Claude A. Jacob, the City’s Chief Public Health Officer and Director of the Cambridge Public Health Department.

Learn more about Broad Institute COVID-19 Rapid Testing Pilot Program in Cambridge Skilled Nursing and Assisted Living Facilities.

Page was posted on 4/12/2020 10:12 PM
Page was last modified on 7/25/2023 12:33 AM
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