Upcoming Events
22News InFocus talked with Jessica Collins about 413Cares
 A new online community resource database for the western Massachusetts region,  413Cares.org , has been launched providing residents the ability to access critical information, resources and referrals to community-serving organizations from one online portal.The launch of the portal, in the works for three years, comes at a particularly urgent time, with the COVID-19 pandemic crisis causing many individuals and families to search for vital services.To see video click here .
Housing and Health: What You Need to Know During this time of COVID-19
Join  Springfield Healthy Homes Arise for Social Justice  and  Focus Springfield  as we host Jane Edmonstone and Claudia Quintero from  Community Legal Aid  for a Facebook Live Chat to discuss what you need to know during the time of COVID-19. They will discuss the moratorium on evictions and foreclosures as well as the following:
  • accessing the courts
  • evictions for private and subsidized housing
  • repairs
  • foreclosure
  • unemployment

Register  and Send in your Questions to be answered LIVE!
View live on Focus Springfield
Letting Leadership Shine Event on May 5,12-1pm
Join Leadership Pioneer Valley to hear from local leaders from different sectors as they share how they are leading during COVID-19, what is needed and what can we expect. Speakers include: Monte Belmonte, WRSI Radio, Jessica Collins , LEAP '12, Executive Director of the Public Health Institute of Western MA, Justin Hurst, LEAP'17, Springfield City Council, Joanne Marqusee, President of Cooley Dickinson Hospital, Dr. Christina Royal, President of Holyoke Community College and Katie Allen Zobel, Community Foundation of Western MA. Other speakers to be announced. Upon registration, you will receive Zoom invitation.

Tuesday, May 5
12-1PM
Click Here for the event.
Health Equity: Comparing Data in Eastern & Western Massachusetts
The Western MA Health Equity Network, at the UMASS Amherst School of Public Health and Health Sciences, worked with a team of four Five College Students from Smith, Hampshire and UMASS respectively with funding from National Science Foundation (NSF) to research health related data science issues. This presentation will hopefully contribute to the ongoing discussion about inequalities in health care and access, but also spark new conversations about inequities among counties. Click here
Data Update
COVID-19 Data By Race And Ethnicity
The Mass Public Health Association released an updated analysis of COVID-19 data on April 22, 2020 , which showed "per capita, cases for Latinx residents are more than three times that of White residents, while per capita cases for Black residents are more than two-and-a-half times that of White residents". 

I t is important to examine data to understand racial and ethnic inequities related to COVID-19 so that action can be taken to address inequities. National level data has demonstrated inequities among communities of color and though these inequities likely exist in many places across the country, Massachusetts testing data collected to date should be interpreted cautiously. Race and ethnicity data was not initially collected for cases so case data being examined has had a large percentage who were missing race and ethnicity data and were classified as “unknown.” In addition, testing has been very limited due to shortages in availability of testing materials and many people who may have had the disease were not able to be tested . Thus , the percent testing positive is dependent on who is tested and not necessarily reflective of the distribution of COVID-19 in the general population.
COVID-19 Community Resource Updates
Attorney General's Office COVID-19 Posters
Everyone has a right to access health care regardless of immigration status. Click here for information on COVID-19 resources available to immigrants and refugees . The Attorney General's office has produced informational posters in multiple languages regarding access to health care and other rights community members have during the time of COVID-19. All the multilingual versions can be found here .
Statewide Face Coverings Order in Effect May 6
The Baker-Polito Administration has ordered all residents over the age of two to use a face covering or mask in public places where maintaining proper social distancing measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are not possible. This statewide order goes into effect on May 6th.
Take Action
Take Action to Support Emergency Paid Sick
Rep. Paul Donato and Sen. Jason Lewis filed An Act Relative to Emergency Paid Sick Time ( HD.5039 / SD.2918 ) last week to address gaps in benefits provided by current state and federal laws. This bill would guarantee all workers at least 10 additional paid workdays (80 hours) of job-protected paid sick time for immediate use during the COVID-19 outbreak or future public health emergencies. Click here to take action now .  
COVID-19 Testing Available
Baystate Health is now hosting COVID-19 testing sites; 140 High Street Springfield, 298 Carew Street Springfield, 164 High St Greenfield (Baystate Franklin Medical Center), 57 Union Street Westfield, 85 South St Ware (Baystate Mary Lane Outpatient Center) . These testing sites can be used with a referral from a Primary Care Physician and you will need an appointment. You don’t need to be Baystate Health affiliated, and these sites are for any patient over age 12 with COVID-19 symptoms- learn more here .
 
Symptoms of COVID-19 vary widely, and may include fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat, and loss of taste or smell. If you develop symptoms, you should call your primary care provider. If you do not have a primary care provider, you can contact an urgent care facility or your local health department. If your clinician deems it necessary, they will provide testing or give you a referral, allowing you to make an appointment at a testing site near you. For more information, visit the MDPH’s webpage on testing , and to view a list of testing locations, click here  
Blink Your Light Campaign
Blink a light outside your home, or a light that can be seen by others outside for 1 minute. The campaign will run until Governor Baker reverses our state of emergency (as the days grow longer we'll be in touch to push back the time.) Thank you for spreading the light and hope.