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Covid-19 traces spike in MWRA South Region tests

Below is the latest graph of Covid-19 traces in MWRA wastewater.

It does not look very good.

Framingham is in the South region along with about 20 communities including Ashland, Natick, Wellesley, and parts of Newton and Boston. Click North on the legend to turn it off and only see the South trend line.

Sewage testing is considered a leading indicator for potential Covid-19 outbreaks since 1) people can shed virus before they have symptoms or get tested, and 2) this doesn’t rely on how many tests are administered to individuals. You can find out more about the program here.

Known new infections seem to be following a similar upward trajectory. Massachusetts today reported more than 1,100 known new cases of Covid-19 for the first time since Spring. While positivity rates are lower now than during our first wave, other data points are concerning.

Covid hospitalizations are up 81% since summer lows and +46% in the last 30 days. And, daily reported deaths are more than double summertime lows.

“Another day of record highs,” Johns Hopkins epidemiologist Caitlin Rivers tweeted about US trends in general. “Transmission will accelerate until we slow it down. The longer leaders wait to act, the more drastic the interventions will be needed to regain control. The way to avoid lockdowns is to make smaller moves earlier.”