Northampton Health Board presents COVID-19 requirements for businesses

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Northampton Health Board has decided not to vote on a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for some businesses in the city.

According to a press release sent to 22News by Northampton’s director of public health Merridith O’Leary, the decision was made at Thursday night’s meeting after discussing current COVID-19-based data from board members and community input.

In December, the Board had considered vaccination requirements for people 5 years of age or older as additional protection in businesses such as restaurants, bars, clubs and gyms. The Board found that “this requirement would have made sense if the recent increase in transmission was due to the original strain of the virus, against which vaccines were developed to protect themselves very effectively, as well as if it were certain that these “However, with the mutations that have occurred in the virus and with the innovative infections that occur in vaccinated individuals, this is not the case.”

“The Board of Health will not discuss vaccine requirements at future meetings unless the data suggests that this requirement would be necessary or beneficial,” O’Leary said.

The Board continues to urge the public to wear masks in public settings, to distance themselves socially, to wash their hands, and to isolate themselves when exposed to, positive, or ill with COVID-19. The next meeting will take place on January 20, 2022, with public comments starting at 5:30 p.m.

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