PITTSFIELD — Interim Director of Public Health Andy Cambi told the Pittsfield City Council Tuesday that the city was not “where we want to be” after another coronavirus death was reported in the city over the weekend.
The new death brings the total number of Pittsfield coronavirus deaths since the pandemic began to 77. The last coronavirus death in the city was on Aug. 25.
Cambi told the council that his department’s team of contact tracers was currently dealing with just under 80 active coronavirus cases in the city. Data from the city’s dashboard showed that as of Monday there were 75 active cases in the city.
Cambi said the department had added additional nursing staff to meet a renewed rise in case counts. The 19 cases reported on Sept. 10 represented the largest single-day increase in cases in the city since April 13.
“I urge our community to continue to cooperate with our contact tracing team by answering their phone calls, giving them a call back and understanding that our contact tracing team is there to work with them and answer any question they might have,” Cambi said.
Hospitalizations of coronavirus patients at Berkshire Medical Center have remain fairly steady according to Cambi. He said the hospital is currently treating 7 patients and 2 ICU patients as of Tuesday.
Pittsfield’s average daily case rate for the last 14 days was 23.7 cases per 100,000 people. That’s down from the Aug. 30 14-day average of 28.4 cases per 100,000 people.
Cambi said that the department is still waiting for the results of the city wastewater tests from last week. The tests help city officials understand how much of the wastewater contains the virus’ genetic signature — a data point that has served as a predictor for whether cases will rise or fall in the coming two weeks.
Though coronavirus cases have continued to tick upward, the city has seen a slight increase in vaccination rates among residents.
The percentage of eligible residents who have received at least one shot of the three vaccines reached 80 percent and the percentage of eligible residents who are fully vaccinated reached 74 percent.
“This is the only upward trend I like to see,” Cambi said.