Number of Mass. communities considered high-risk for coronavirus rises to 77

BOSTON (WHDH) - As more people get vaccinated in the United States, medical experts are keeping a close eye on the Midwest and Northeast, where new cases of COVID-19 are surging.

“We felt very strong that we had this disease under attack but then we get thrown a curveball,” said Dr. Lynda Misra, medical director of the COVID-19 unit at Beaumont Health.

The number of communities at high risk for COVID-19 in Massachusetts has risen to 77, the Department of Public Health announced Thursday.

Many towns in Cape Cod fall in the red category, bringing with it growing concern.

Officials say virus variants have played a role in driving up the area’s case counts, which is something that they are keeping an eye on as summer and the tourist season approaches.

Amid a rise in cases in parts of the U.S., CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky says the face of COVID-19 is trending younger.

“Hospitals are seeing more and more younger adults, those in their 30s and 40s,” she said.

Emerson College in Boston recently added new restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19 within their students and staff.

New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu also announced that the state will offer vaccines to residents of other states beginning April 19.

The announcement is a change in stance for Sununu who had recently said out-of-state students would have to travel home to get vaccinated.

He had faced pressure from local officials to reverse the vaccine residency requirement, including the town manager in Durham where the University of N.H. is located.

“We would have appreciated seeing the vaccinations being available now, today, but, again, better late than never,” Durham Town Manager Todd Selig said.

All N.H. residents age 16 and older have been eligible for the vaccine since April 2.

President Joe Biden ordered the rest of the country to make vaccines available to those 16 years and older by April 19.

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