Demand for corona-virus testing is rising again across the county and the state, Berkshire Health Systems is staffing up its testing hotline and warning that results could take longer to arrive because of processing delays.

As of Monday, 11/16  there were 45 new COVID-19 cases to Berkshire County, as hospital cases climbed and the region again is confronting testing backlogs. The new cases brought the county’s confirmed COVID-19 case count to 1,072, the state Department of Public Health said. The death toll was unchanged Monday, at 52.

>Berkshire Medical Center reported that it now is caring for nine COVID-19-positive patients, including one in intensive care for the first time in weeks

The DPH said 12 new deaths were reported in Massachusetts, pushing the statewide total to 10,110.

The Berkshire Eagle reports that Calls to the BHS testing hotline surged to over 1,000 per day by the end of last week, after previously averaging in the 100s and 200s, according to spokesperson Michael Leary. The numbers dropped back down over the weekend, but some callers still experienced long wait times Monday morning.

Leary told The Eagle that the hospital system has, so far, been able to handle the increase in requests. Appointments still are available within days at locations in North Adams, Pittsfield and Great Barrington.

Massachusetts reported more than 111,000 new PCR test results Saturday, the highest number since the pandemic began.

The following information is from the Coronavirus Information Kiosk With the most recent significant rise in positive COVID-19 cases in the Berkshires, it is imperative that our residents and visitors strictly adhere to the guidelines issued by the CDC, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and healthcare professionals on: social distancing, hand hygiene, cleaning of surfaces and, importantly, masking!
For some helpful information on some of these guidelines.

Wear a Mask or Face Covering
Stop the Spread of Infectious Diseases like COVID-19 and Influenza
Social Distancing
What to Do if You Test Positive for COVID-19
Quarantine & Self-Monitoring Information
Coping with Stress & Fear
CALL THE BERKSHIRE HEALTH SYSTEMS CORONAVIRUS HOTLINE FOR TESTING APPOINTMENTS OR ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THE NOVEL CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19).

NURSES ARE AVAILABLE TO TAKE YOUR CALLS FROM 8 AM TO 4:30 PM SEVEN DAYS A WEEK - CALL 855-BMC-LINK, OR 855-262-5465.

*PLEASE NOTE: They are experiencing extremely high call volumes at this time. Please remain on the line and your call will be answered in the order in which it is received.

www.berkshirehealthsystems.org
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