Chelsea was one of the worst hit cities in Massachusetts by COVID. The first wave, from March to July, impacted mostly Latinx essential workers in their 40s. The worst outcomes, however, were suffered among those 65 and older. During the fall, the virus migrated to a younger cohort, affecting mostly Latinx non-essential workers, in their 30´s and the mortality rate dropped significantly. However, a second wave began on November 26th, signaling both pandemic exhaustion and the beginning of a meaningful holiday season that brought residents together and increased transmission. During this second wave, the average age of transmission increased to the upper 30s (37) and the pandemic once again affected mostly essential workers. What is most alarming is that cases increased from an average of 50 cases a week to over 300.
We are working with the La Colaborativa and have assembled a team of health promoters or promoteres. The promoteres are working with wastewater monitoring and mobile testing van data in tandem with the communications team at the La Colaborativa and the Chelsea City government as well as neighborhood leaders and church groups. Our goal is to decrease transmission of COVID in Chelsea, improve access to reliable information on COVID among Chelsea residents and to improve access to COVID vaccines among Chelsea residents via local organizations and effective case management.