A Watertown company has started looking at how it can produce much-needed medical equipment to help during the Coronavirus outbreak. A shortage of medical supplies has been a problem as hospitals test for and treat patients with the COVID-19. Mark-Forged, located on Pleasant Street, has started to develop ways to 3-D print swabs and protective face shields used by medical staff when working with patients who may have the Coronavirus. The company was featured in a story on WHDH Channel 7. CEO Mark Greg estimates that 20 3-D printers could make 14,000 swabs a day.
The following announcement was sent out by the Watertown Business Coalition:
Dear Watertown Business Community –
Certainly, these are unprecedented times.
At the same time that we are worried about the health of our loved ones, the Coronavirus outbreak has also put the well-being of our businesses at risk. We are trying to pivot to adjust to this strange and constantly changing environment, while trying to find a way to keep paying our employees. The Watertown Business Coalition wants to help in any way we can. Hardest hit is our core group of followers: restaurants, retail, and “mom and pop” stores. We urge you to all be proactive.
The recently opened Majestic 7 is one of several places at Arsenal Yards that will close temporarily due to the Coronavirus. Most of the retail stores at Watertown’s Arsenal Yards have closed due to the outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the area. The new cinema and two of the new restaurants were also impacted. On Friday, Marshalls announced it will be closing its Watertown store temporarily, Arsenal Yards announced on its Facebook page:
Starting today, Marshalls at Arsenal Yards will be closed for the next two weeks. TJX has made the decision to close all their stores globally to help prevent the further spread of the virus.
See the open houses around Watertown this weekend. $1,050,000 – 158 Lovell Road, Single Family – Detached Colonial, 2,220 Living Area Sq. Ft., 9 Room, 3 Bedroom, 2 Full & 2 Half Bathroom, Open Houses: Saturday 11:30-1:30 Sunday 11:30-1:30
$835,000 – 126-128 Walnut St., Multi-family Home – 2 Family – 2 Units Up/Down, 2,382 Living Area Sq. Ft., 2 Units, 12 Total Rooms, 4 Total Bedrooms, Open House: Sunday 11:30-12:30
$865,000 – 94 Stoneleigh Road, Single Family – Detached Garrison, 1,700 Living Area Sq. Ft., 7 Room, 3 Bedroom, 2 Full & 1 Half Bathroom, Sunday 1-4
$835,000 – 126-128 Walnut St., Multi-family Home – 2 Family – 2 Units Up/Down, 2,382 Living Area Sq.
Stop & Shop is not the only supermarket in the area offering special shopping hours for seniors in an effort to provide extra social distancing for those who could be more at risk if they got the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Some of Watertown’s local markets have added time for seniors to shop, or other ways for residents to access food and produce. Russo’s Market, 560 Pleasant St., has special hours for seniors from 6 a.m. to 7:30 a.m.
Arax Market announced on its Facebook page: We are offering delivery for Watertown residents ONLY ($25 minimum). We will also do your shopping for you and you can come and pick it up. You can call (617-924-3399) or message us on Facebook or Instagram.We have been working round the clock to ensure all of our customers have fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, bread, dairy, and homemade prepared meals. Massis Bakery said on its Facebook page that its shelves are stocked, and it is open Monday through Saturday.
Some banks have closed their lobbies in response to the Coronavirus outbreak, others have cut back their hours and some, mostly the large banks, remain open with regular hours but with extra efforts to disinfect their branches. Watertown Savings Bank announced Wednesday that it will be closing its lobbies, but the drive-up locations are still open. It provided the following information:
All drive‑up services will remain open for bank transactions. If you use our drive‑up services, you will notice that we are taking extra precautions — such as having our team wear protective gloves — to ensure your and our employees’ safety. While prudent, this makes certain transactions, like counting money, somewhat harder and some transactions may take longer.
Supermarket chain Stop & Shop announced that it will soon start opening early to allow shoppers 60 and older to get their groceries as part of their efforts for social distancing due to the Coronavirus. Stop & Shop said it would open early to allow give older people to shop before the broader public can start shopping. “To support this group, beginning Thursday, March 19th, all Stop & Shop stores will open earlier in order to service only customers who are age 60 and over from 6:00a.m.-7:30a.m. daily.” “We’re making the decision to offer this every day of the week to allow for community members in this age category to shop in a less crowded environment, which better enables social distancing. They’ll also be shopping prior to any other customers entering.”
The following announcement was sent out by Watertown-based Enanta Pharmaceuticals:
Enanta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ENTA), a clinical-stage biotechnology company dedicated to creating small molecule drugs for viral infections and liver diseases, today announced that it has initiated a program to discover direct-acting antiviral drug candidates for the treatment of patients infected with the novel coronavirus COVID-19, also known as SARS-CoV-2. The company is leveraging its years of expertise in virology, including its discovery work on two approved protease inhibitors – paritaprevir and glecaprevir – for use against hepatitis C virus (HCV), its development of a candidate for hepatitis B virus (HBV), and most importantly, its development of candidates for respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and human metapneumovirus (hMPV), to explore approaches against this pandemic health threat. Enanta is taking a two-pronged approach to its COVID-19 discovery efforts. It is testing compounds from its antiviral compound library for potential activity against COVID-19. It is also initiating a drug discovery program using its expertise in direct-acting antiviral mechanisms to discover new candidates to treat COVID-19.
State and federal officials sent out the following information about assistance for small businesses during the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), including information on loans, layoff prevention and emergency contacts. Massachusetts state officials sent out the following information:
1 – Resources for the Business Community: COVID-1 MEMA’s Emergency Operations Center’s Private Sector Hotline
The hotline will be staffed Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.The number for the hotline is 508-820-2094. 2 – Small Business Recovery Loan Fund – https://www.empoweringsmallbusiness.org/what-we-offer/emergency-loan-funds/covid-19-loan-fund
$10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund, administered by Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC), to provide emergency capital up to $75,000 to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees, including nonprofits.This fund is being offered with no payments due for the first 6 months, then 30-months of principal and interest payments and no prepayment penalties (annual interest rate of 3.0%). 3 – Small Business Administration’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program – https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-resources-and-guidance-for-businesses
EIDL offers Massachusetts businesses who are experiencing hardships resulting from the COVID-19 outbreak access up to $2M in emergency loan capital with rates capped at 3.75%.We are currently working with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to activate the EIDL program. We will update this group when the program formally opens.Businesses can learn more about the SBA’s response to COVID-19 here: https://www.sba.gov/page/guidance-businesses-employers-plan-respond-coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19
3 – Governor Baker’s Emergency Order (3/15) limiting gatherings to 25 individuals and prohibiting on-premises consumption of food or drink at bars and restaurants, beginning on March 17 and effective until April 6.