Peabody COVID-19 cases surge, prompting high-risk classification from state

PEABODY — For the first time since the state announced new, less restrictive guidelines to determine which towns and cities are at a higher risk for coronavirus transmission, the state classified Peabody as a red, or high-risk, community.

According to the public health report released by the state on Thursday, Peabody has had 289 active cases of the coronavirus over the past 14 days and 325 positive test results. In total, there have been 1,753 cases of COVID-19 in the city, according to the report.

On Nov. 16, the Department of Public Health released a map illustrating where in the city COVID-19 has spread. While the map shows cases across the city, there is a large cluster on the eastern border of the city near Salem.

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“As you can see, no section of the City has been spared,” the department said in a Facebook post. “We are seeing increased levels of transmission among household members as well as groups of families and friends gathering together.”

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The post also said the average age of a Peabody resident who tests positive dropped from 62 in April to 38 in August.

“Please, keep following the public health guidance about social distancing, hand hygiene, staying home if you’re sick, wearing a mask whenever you’re in public, and avoiding gatherings with those outside your household,” the post said. “YOU have the power to contribute to a safer community!”

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Mayor Ted Bettencourt and Superintendent Josh Vadala did not immediately respond to request for comment.

Staff writer Erin Nolan can be reached at 978-338-2534, by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at @erin_nolan_.

 

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