Walsh reports no new coronavirus deaths, says Bostonians are now recovering at faster rate

BOSTON (WHDH) - Mayor Martin J. Walsh reported Wednesday that the total number of coronavirus deaths in the city did not increase from Monday to Tuesday and he said that Bostonians are now recovering from the disease at a faster rate than weeks prior.

As of Tuesday, Boston has seen 11,168 positive cases of coronavirus and 533 deaths, Walsh announced during a news conference at City Hall.

“That’s an increase of 62 cases from the previous day and 533 people have passed away. That’s the same number as of Monday,” Walsh said. “A day with no deaths to report is certainly a good day.”

Despite the positive milestone, Walsh said Boston still has “work to do if we want to see that every day.”

Walsh noted that 3,805 city residents have since recovered from COVID-19.

“That number is going up faster as we begin to get data from the state’s Community Tracing Collaborative,” Walsh said.

Walsh added that his administration supports Gov. Charlie Baker’s four-phase plan to reopening the economy but he said it must be implemented in a “cautious” manner.

RELATED: Baker details what a Monday reopening could look like, says path to new normal will be ‘uncomfortable’ test of patience

Phase 1 of the plan, which calls for the reopening of businesses that are “naturally set up” and have “limited face-to-face interactions,” could be initiated on Monday, May 18. The state’s stay-at-home advisory is also slated to expire that day but Baker has given no indication as to whether it will be lifted.

“We support a cautious, phased-in approach that includes clear health criteria and safety guidelines for each industry,” Walsh said.

Walsh said his administration has spoken with restaurants, labor organizations, faith communities, healthcare providers, colleges, office buildings, and other businesses in the city about possibly reopening but he stopped short of saying that Monday will definitely mark the beginning of a path to a new normal.

“I want to temper expectations. We don’t move forward based on a date. We move forward based on data,” Walsh said. “This must be a gradual, phased-in approach that depends on testing, hospital metrics reaching certain benchmarks, and continuing to move in the right direction.”

Walsh warned the public that if the city moves too fast, there could be a spike in new cases that wipes out all of the work everyone has done to get to the brink of reopening.

“We would have to roll back all of the work that we are doing now in opening and essentially start over,” Walsh said. “That would be worse for our economy and be terrible for all of the individuals here in Boston.”

While city and state officials continue to work to determine whether Monday is a safe time to reopen, Walsh urged all residents to remain focused on physical distancing, wearing a face covering, limiting trips outdoors, avoiding crowded places, practicing good hygiene, and cleaning and sanitizing surfaces.

“I want to be clear about the principles that guide us. We base our decisions on science-based facts,” Walsh said. “We prioritize the health and security of all residents of Boston.”

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