COVID cases, concerns grow

State sees drop in seven-day positivity rate.

11 of the 13 cases this week were reported from the hospital. — Kyra Steck

The Island boards of health reported 23 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday, for a total of 55 cases since Friday.

Of the new cases, 11 were reported from Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, 10 from TestMV, and two from other providers.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the hospital has conducted 11,599 tests for COVID-19 since March. Of those, 525 have tested positive, 11,058 negative, and 16 are pending results.

There are currently two patients hospitalized with COVID-19. The hospital reported that one of the two patients reported hospitalized on Wednesday was discharged on Friday. Another patient was admitted on Saturday. Both patients are in “good condition,” according to communications specialist Marissa Lefebvre.

On Jan. 12, the hospital sent a patient in “serious condition” off-Island by MedFlight. There have been four total COVID-19-related transfers since the pandemic began.

In an expanded report Friday, the Martha’s Vineyard boards of health reported that there were 91 active cases of COVID-19 on the Island. Each of those active cases was an individual who tested positive between Jan. 3 and 15.

The Martha’s Vineyard public schools have tested 1,265 individuals. On Saturday, the school testing site reported one positive result. The boards of health reported the school’s first positive result on Tuesday.

As of Wednesday, TestMV has conducted 30,760 tests since June. Of those, 228 have tested positive, 29,406 negative, and 1,126 are pending results.

There was one new probable positive reported Wednesday, for a total of 49 since March.

The town of Aquinnah has conducted 405 tests, of which one has come back positive, 404 negative.

The Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) reported two new cases Friday, for a total of four since testing began for the tribe.

Individuals may be tested more than once to confirm illness or to be released from isolation. This can result in a discrepancy between the number of positive individuals and the number of positive tests reported.

Since March, there have been 761 cases of COVID-19 reported on Martha’s Vineyard. Of those, 382 are male and 379 are female, with the majority of the cases being in individuals between 20 and 39. Only 31 cases have been reported in individuals over 70 years old.

The vast majority of those cases were reported in the past two months, when the Island’s first cluster of cases was linked to a wedding in October. Since then, the Island has seen 672 cases of COVID-19 — more than seven times the 89 cases reported on the Island between when testing began in March and Oct. 25.

In addition to the wedding cluster, which reported eight cases, clusters at Cronig’s Market, with 19 cases, and a Bible study group, with 11 cases, have also been reported.

On Tuesday, the state reported 2,567 new confirmed cases of COVID-19. The state’s seven-day average of percent positivity has dropped to 5.94 percent, after several weeks of being above 8 percent. There are an estimated 93,300 active cases statewide. There were 45 new deaths, for a total of 13,469 COVID-19 deaths since March.


  1. Yesterdays letter to the Editor from Don Keller asks for a Vaccination plan that everyone can understand and get in line for. Keller was thoughtful. We should be on a war footing and vaccinate on demographics with old people with underlying conditions first, hospital workers and then down the line by declining age. Lets see this happen. I got mine at Walgreens in Florida and now its available at Publix a large grocery shop chain in Florida and it isnt based upon white privilege, a term we will doubtless see more of in the future

    • Andrew– thank you for your comment.
      Let me say a word or 2 about white privilege.
      It’s not so much that a doctor or pharmacist will consciously or even unconsciously favor a white person. The issue is embedded much more deeply in our society than something like overt racism– but there is plenty of that also. It is in generations of suppressed people. They have less of everything, and it is entirely because the deck is stacked against them.
      When you have less of everything, you are at a distinct disadvantage to acquire anything. Including a covid shot.
      Can we blame the black community for not trusting the medical establishment ? The Tuskegee scandal has left a deep scar.
      There are numerous examples of abuse at the hands of while doctors and researchers. If a con man like trump can convince 40 % of the population that he won the election, how can you expect disadvantaged people to not believe conspiracy theories ?
      It goes to everything; lack of health care, lack of reliable transportation, lack of whatever . Yes, we will hear about white privilege again and again, not only concerning this country, but how this will play out around the world.
      We a civilization, and a species, have failed to even address the issues of inequality.

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