The coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) is a contagious disease that is infecting people across the United States. This webpage will provide Brewster residents with information about Town activities related to the coronavirus, as well as trustworthy sources of additional information.
What is Coronavirus and How Does It Spread?
Coronavirus is a respiratory infection that can be spread from one person to another. It appears to spread between people who are in close contact with each other (within about 6 feet) and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
This coronavirus (COVID-19) causes respiratory (lung) infection. Symptoms include:
Shortness of breath
In more serious case, pneumonia (a lung infection) may develop
There are actions you and your family can take to protect yourselves from the coronavirus:
Wear a mask or face covering in any public setting (indoors or outdoors) and when in the presence of others other than your household family members.
Wash your hands frequently, for at least 20 seconds, with soap and water. If soap and water aren’t available, use hand sanitizer with an alcohol concentration of at least 60%
Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
Avoid contact with people who are sick.
Stay home if you are sick.
Put distance between yourself and others if we experience coronavirus in our community – especially if you are at higher risk of getting sick. Older adults and people with serious chronic medical conditions are at higher risk.
If you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve.
Routinely clean hard surfaces and areas where germs may collect.
There are no treatments or vaccine for COVID-19. Patients can receive treatment to relieve symptoms - for example, medications for cough and fever.
Coronavirus Checklist for Getting Your Home Ready
Review this CDC guidance so your home is prepared. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/home/checklist-household-ready.html
Travel from Out of State and High Risk Areas
If you recently returned from travel to out-of-state areas or overseas, the Center for Disease Control and MA Dept. of Public Health request that you self-quarantine for a period of fourteen (14) days from the date you entered back into Massachusetts.
Coronavirus Information Resources
A Caution About Untrustworthy Coronavirus Information
Make sure you get your information from trusted sources, and that you follow guidance from the CDC, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and the Brewster Health Department.
In some cases, people may be directed to “self-quarantine” if they are suspected of having the coronavirus or recently traveled to a country with many cases.
Self-quarantine (or home isolation) means you:
Stay at home except for getting medical care.
Avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, and taxis.
Stay away from other people and pets in your home and use a separate bathroom if possible.
No visitors should come to your home.
If you need medical care, call ahead for guidance unless it is an emergency.
Avoid sharing household items.
Wash your hands frequently.
Wear a facemask if around other people.
Cover your sneezes and coughs with a tissue.
Monitor for any symptoms, or worsening symptoms.
Discontinue self-quarantine only in consultation with a health care provided.
The Brewster Health Department
If you have questions about the coronavirus, contact the Brewster Health Department at (508) 896-3701 ext. 1120 or by email.
Amy von Hone, Health Director
Sherrie McCullough, Assistant Health Director
Tammi Mason, Senior Department Assistant
The Massachusetts Humane Society provides assistance to people who have lost their job, or are low income or disabled. The Society will assist most types of animals including dogs, cats, small animals, birds, exotics, horses and other barnyard animals, and wildlife. The Society can provide food, medicine, cat litter, hay, bedding, flea and tick prevention, and other pet supplies. Items can be shipped to you or can be picked up in Braintree. The Society is committed to seeing that people can continue to care for their pets and not be forced to surrender them. For assistance, call (781) 335-1300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Leave a message with your name, phone, type of pets and supplies you are requesting.
Governor Baker announced an extension of his earlier statewide order closing all non-essential businesses and advising residents to stay at home and to avoid gatherings of more than 10 people through May 18. The state also provided additional guidance on how the essential services order applies to lodging facilities. Please click on the links below for more details.
Brewster town officials ask that all residents abide by these directives.
The Cape Cod & Islands Major Crisis Relief Fund provides humanitarian aid to individuals and families during natural disasters and epidemics. The fund is part of the Cape Cod Times Needy Fund, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, and seeks to help individuals with urgent and long-term needs.
Requests for assistance can be made by:
Mail: Major Crisis Relief Fund, P.O. Box 804, Hyannis, MA 02601
Phone: (508) 778-7107
Donations are also needed at this time, to help our neighbors in need, and can be made:
Online via PayPal or Stripe: https://majorcrisisrelieffund.org/donate/
Mail: Major Crisis Relief Fund, P.O. Box 804, Hyannis, MA 02601
Phone: (508) 778-7107
For more information, visit the Major Crisis Relief Fund website: www.majorcrisisrelieffund.org
The Town of Brewster urges those who have recently returned or are planning to return to Brewster from any other out-of-state areas to self-isolate in their homes for a period of fourteen (14) days. This action is consistent with recent public health guidance provided by federal, state, and county officials.
This voluntary self-isolation, out of an abundance of caution, is necessary because incidence rates across the country are accelerating at alarming rates. Self-isolation for 14 days will help curb the spread of the disease in Brewster and across the Cape, and it will reduce the burden on our critical infrastructure, including first responders, hospitals, and health care workers.
We strongly urge all new arrivals to Brewster to take special steps to distance themselves when buying groceries or undertaking other essential activities in our community. New arrivals should practice social distancing, avoid group gatherings, monitor their health, and contact a health care provider if symptoms such as fever with cough or shortness of breath occur.
For more information about testing and how to protect yourself and others from this highly contagious disease, please visit:
You may call the Massachusetts non-emergency information phone line by dialing 211.
To the Brewster community, your Fire and EMS personnel are looking a little different when they show up to emergency medical calls these days. Pictured, here is Firefighter/Paramedic Jared Hogg shown wearing some of the personal protective equipment commonly being worn by our staff members amidst the COVID-19 crisis.
Brewster Fire Rescue would like all or our residents to know that we continue to respond to the fire and emergency medical needs of our local and regional communities during the current pandemic event. We continue to work with town departments such as Police, Health, DPW, Emergency Management, Water and County and State assets on a daily basis to ensure we provide the highest level of care to our community while dealing with the COVID-19 virus.
Read more: Brewster Fire/Rescue Implements Recommended Public Health Protocols
On Saturday, in response to Governor Charlie Baker’s request for federal disaster assistance, the White House and FEMA announced that the President has issued a Major Disaster Declaration that will make federal disaster assistance available beyond what was included in the Emergency Declaration declared by President Trump on March 13, 2020.
Federal aid will be available to cities and towns, state agencies and certain non-profits in all Massachusetts counties to help pay for emergency protective measures (response costs) related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The disaster declaration has activated the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)’s Public Assistance (PA) Program for all counties, making federal funding available to local governments, state agencies, and eligible private non-profit organizations for eligible emergency protective measures (FEMA Public Assistance Category B). The incident period is from January 20, 2020 and continuing.
It is important that applicants track their costs for the duration of the response to be ready to submit for reimbursement once the crisis has passed.
The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency will provide webinars and other information about the process for applying for the Public Assistance Program to municipal and state officials and eligible non-profits. See here for more information.
The Council on Aging, with the assistance of our partners at Nauset Schools Food Service and the Brewster Recreation Department, delivered hot meals to 27 of our senior residents this week. If you are in need of a hot meal and are not part of the Meals on Wheels Program, please call the Brewster Council on Aging at 508-896-2737. Meals will be delivered on Tuesdays and Thursdays between the hours of 11:30am and 1pm. These meals are free and food safety protocols are in place for home delivery.
In addition, the Council on Aging is offering grocery delivery and prescription pick up for seniors in need. A Council on Aging staff member will be available to answer your calls on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 8 to 11am. At all other times, please leave us a message and one of our staff will return your call promptly.
The Brewster COA is an excellent resource for residents who are 60 and older. Senior residents seeking assistance or referrals are encouraged to call. Stay Strong, Stay Safe, Stay Home. We are here for you.
We have also compiled List of Food Resources and Other Supports For Brewster Residents which is available in PDF format.
Check IRS.gov for the latest information: No action needed by most people at this time
IR-2020-61, March 30, 2020
WASHINGTON – The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service today announced that distribution of economic impact payments will begin in the next three weeks and will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people. However, some seniors and others who typically do not file returns will need to submit a simple tax return to receive the stimulus payment.
Who is eligible for the economic impact payment?
Tax filers with adjusted gross income up to $75,000 for individuals and up to $150,000 for married couples filing joint returns will receive the full payment. For filers with income above those amounts, the payment amount is reduced by $5 for each $100 above the $75,000/$150,000 thresholds. Single filers with income exceeding $99,000 and $198,000 for joint filers with no children are not eligible.
Eligible taxpayers who filed tax returns for either 2019 or 2018 will automatically receive an economic impact payment of up to $1,200 for individuals or $2,400 for married couples. Parents also receive $500 for each qualifying child.
Read more: IRS: Economic impact payments: What you need to know