New State Restrictions Reducing Restaurant, Retail Capacities; Impacts Gatherings, Surgeries

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Gov. Charlie Baker, with Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito.

Gov. Charlie Baker, with Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito.

Massachusetts will have a post-Christmas tightening of COVID-19 restrictions that will reduce capacities of restaurants, businesses and other places, as well as cutting the size of allowed gatherings and stopping elective surgeries.

The new set of COVID-19 restrictions will take effect on Dec. 26, 2020, Gov. Charlie Baker announced on Tuesday.

The new order cuts the capacity of many businesses to 25 percent, including restaurants, retail, offices, health and fitness, theaters and indoor recreation.

Baker said the decision to limit capacity of businesses was “an enormously difficult decision,” that will negatively impact people’s lives. He added that the new stimulus bill passed by Congress will help mitigate some of the financial impact, according to the Boston Globe report.

Also restricted to 25 percent capacity are libraries, houses of worship and museums.

The sizes of gatherings will also be reduced under the new restrictions, with indoor gatherings limited to 10 people and outdoor gatherings will be limited to 25 people.

Baker also announced that hospitals will not be performing non-essential inpatient elective procedures. The move is aimed at increasing hospitals’ inpatient capacity.

Baker referenced a spike in COVID-19 cases following Thanksgiving, and said that hospitals in Massachusetts are under pressure from an increase in cases, according to a report by WBUR.

See more details in the announcement by the Baker/Polito Administration by clicking here.

7 thoughts on “New State Restrictions Reducing Restaurant, Retail Capacities; Impacts Gatherings, Surgeries

  1. What I read says that hospitals are not being overwhelmed:

    Here is an excerpt:

    “Indeed, nearly three years ago, during the 2017 – 2018 flu season, there were many reports in the media about hospitals around the US being overwhelmed with flu patients.
    Nobody was calling for the economy to be shut down or for individual liberty to be curtailed as a means of solving the problem.”

    So who is right?

  2. “So who is right” . . . obviously Gov. Baker and the experts who advise him. Historical flu data you reference has no useful role as we try to deal with today’s CV-19 impact. If you cannot see that simple fact you don’t understand either disease.

  3. Gov Baker may have ‘experts’ who advise him, but him tightening restrictions without showing evidence that the restricted services such as restaurants, for example, are contributing to an increase in Covid cases sounds arbitrary and ineffective.

  4. Just in the past few days there has been an uptick in cases in Watertown including a high schoolers.

    I think what Baker is doing is right. The evidence is clear that indoor dining and indoor gatherings at home is part of the spread. Honestly, it’s hard for me to understand why anyone would even want to be indoors in a restaurant or even at someone home for a gathering. I would like to see our town preventing activities that are high risk, especially certain sports. The risk of covid is just too high.

  5. And how many went to Target or Walmart or a supermarket? Is that question even asked or is a narrative being fashioned and supported here?

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